Recently developed vegetable varieties aid mechanization and climatic adaptability
A constant search is carried on by scientists of the Department of Vegetable Crops at Davis and Riverside for plant breeding materials—among both wild species and cultivated varieties —that will contribute resistance to specific plant diseases of concern to the vegetable industry. After crosses are made between the resistant types and commonly cultivated varieties, a prolonged process of backcrossing and selection has to be followed. The progenies have to be checked and rechecked to be sure that the resistance is not lost. Ultimately the breeding lines are brought back to horticulturally desirable types. Then they have to be tested for their adaptability to the various climatic areas of the state— usually with the help of county farm advisors. The processing and shipping ability of the crop has to be determined, as well as edible quality. Only after all of these evaluations is the decision made to release a new variety to the seed industry for seed increase and distribution to growers. This report reviews some of the varieties developed in the past few years that have found a place in the state's production, as well as some new varieties just released.