The IPPFBE plant breeding activities include:
Variety Release and Documentation
Variety release by IPPFBE will be based on the following factors:
Released varieties will generally be registered in Hort Science or Crop Science, as appropriate, to document the variety’s origin, the breeding method used, and the characteristics of interest. The publication of these plant release documents will provide public recognition for the scientific value of corporation research.
Plant Breeding Program and Methods
The current IPPFBE plant-breeding program is focused on developing perennial plants that are adapted throughout the Intermountain West and uses field trial plots located in northern Utah and southeastern Idaho. The program is an expansion and enhancement of an initial research program located in Richmond, Utah. Tens of thousands of nuts collected from selected trees in the United States and Canada, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Ukraine, western China, and other areas of Central Asia have been planted. Over seven thousand genetically unique seedlings are currently being evaluated in field trials conducted on plots located at Richmond, Utah, and Dayton, Idaho. The tree species being evaluated include black walnuts, Persian walnuts, filberts, apricots, pecans, heart nuts, pine nuts, oaks, and chestnuts. The scope of the IPPFBE plant-breeding program will be expanded in cooperation with other plant breeding programs to produce enhanced perennial crops adapted throughout most of the temperate regions of the world.
The evaluation criteria used in the IPPFBE plant breeding program include:
Thousands of additional seedlings will be planted each year as new, more diverse, and promising sources of genetic material (seeds, graft wood, and other propagating material) become available, opportunities arrive, and objectives expand. Plants that do not meet the rigorous selection criteria of the breeding program will be discarded as soon as identified. Field evaluations will be complemented with appropriate laboratory screens including the use of genetic markers to select favorable plants and other advanced laboratory technologies consistent with the natural enhancement of plant characteristics.
Intercrossing of the best plants will produce progenies to determine the best parents to use in genetically diverse varieties and breeding populations and to initiate new cycles of phenotype and genotype recurrent selection and backcrossing. Each of these breeding cycles should build on the accomplishments of all previous cycles. The continuous plant improvement provided by a long-term breeding program is a great advantage over the numerous short-term breeding programs that focus on short-term research results. Economic factors typically force most institutions to focus their research on short-term projects with very limited scope.