Take Time to Survey the Latest Florida Citrus Varieties

Take Time to Survey the Latest Florida Citrus Varieties

Citrus variety options are increasing rapidly. Many growers have planted trials of new selections for fresh and processed channels. Variety display events present an opportunity to monitor those selections and varieties that you have in trials, to see those that you passed-up, and to keeps tabs on all of the new material in the pipeline.

The UF/IFAS and USDA-ARS breeding teams invest a tremendous amount of time preparing for these events and growers, processors, packers, marketers, retailers, and trade representatives would be well served to take advantage of the opportunity. This is the best way to stay informed and current on variety opportunities from in-state programs. Breeders will be present to offer information and answer questions.

The key questions are: What will I see, where can I see it, and when? While we cannot make any guarantees, the teams did their best to highlight those selections and types that are likely to be shown at each of the scheduled events. However, one of the great things about the displays is the unknown. Breeding teams will continue to scour the new plantings and trials for promising selections right up to the day of the display. The only way to know for sure what will be at the display is to attend and participate. Here are some of the things identified by the teams:

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UF/IFAS

 

Dec. 7, 2017 • Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC)
Lake Alfred • 10:00 AM

  • Hoping for fruit of RBB 7-34: FAST TRACK Suite II high-quality, seedless Navel-like orange hybrid
  • 950: December maturing, easy peel seedless variety from FAST TRACK Suite I. Trees look good in the field.
  • ‘Seedless Snack’: October/November seedless, firm-fleshed mandarin

Several new seedless mandarins showing some apparent improved HLB tolerance

  • EV-1’ & ‘EV-2’: Early maturing Valencia oranges
  • ‘N13-32’: Improved Hamlin orange
Sugar Belle oranges

‘Sugar Belle’
Photo courtesy of UF/IFAS

Pummelo and grapefruit hybrids, including ‘Pummelette,’ ‘Monster,’ and possibly 914

  • ‘UFSunrise’: Easy peel seedless mandarin, in FAST TRACK Suite III. Trees holding up well.
  • C4-16-12: Seedless triploid hybrid with sweet orange juice profile
  • Cybrid 304: Large mandarin hybrid with sweet orange juice profile; possibly other orange-like hybrids
  • LB8-9 ‘Sugar Belle’: High-quality specialty fruit with excellent flavor; HLB tolerant
  • Possibly 1420: Early season, high-quality, seedless, easy-peel mandarin
  • 1351: High-quality mandarin with seeds that has been irradiated

 


 

UF/IFAS 914 grapefruit

Love grapefruit but can’t eat it because you’re taking prescriptions? UF ‘914’ may be the answer, according to UF/IFAS’ Dr. Jude Grosser. Other attributes to this fruit include a great taste (no sugar needed), improved canker tolerance and possible HLB tolerance.
Photo by Paul Rusnak

Jan. 9, 2018 • Indian River Research and Education Center, Ft. Pierce • 10:00 AM
Pummelo and grapefruit hybrids/ mandarin orange hybrids (seedless and some improved HLB tolerance)

  • Pummelo and grapefruit hybrids, including ‘Pummelette’ and possibly 914
  • Grapefruit somaclones with unique characteristics
  • ‘OLL’ or possibly an earlier maturing OLL
  • Valquarius’: January maturing, true Valencia orange
  • ‘Vernia’: Two new clones
  • ‘EV-1’: December maturing, true Valencia orange
  • ‘EV-2’: December maturing, true Valencia orange
  • ‘N13-32’: Improved Hamlin orange
  • Possibly 411: January maturing, easy-peel, seeded, high-quality mandarin from FAST TRACK Suite I

 


 

Photo courtesy of Florida Foundation Seed Producers Inc.

Feb. 20, 2018 • CREC, Lake Alfred • 10:00 AM
This display promises to be heavy on processing oranges

  • ‘OLL-4’: Late-season, high-quality new orange release
  • ‘OLL-8’: Late-season, high-quality new orange release
  • B9-65: Late-season orange released and available
  • ‘Summer Gold’ grapefruit and possibly 914
  • Valencia: N10-13
  • Other OLLs: 20, 6, 7, 10

 


USDA-ARS

A display is scheduled at the Florida Citrus Show, Jan. 24-25, 2018 (Fenn Center, Ft Pierce). To the extent possible, depending on fruit production and maturity, these selections/varieties will be displayed at both events.

  • Seedless ‘Foster’ Grapefruit: An irradiated selection of ‘Foster’ Grapefruit; seedless, pink flesh, early ripening, and lower in acid than other pure grapefruit selections
  • FF-5-51-2: Along with three low-seed variants of FF-5-51-2, this is an easy peeling, high-quality mandarin selection.
    It ripens near Christmas time or a little before. This hybrid — so far — seems to have a usable level of tolerance to HLB. It probably will need cross pollination.
  • ‘Fallglo’ x ‘Kishu’ Hybrids (FF-1-35-21, FF-1-35-81, Ftp-6-2-110, Ftp-6-1-41: Mandarin selections that are
    completely seedless and
    easily peeled when ripe; horticultural characteristics and disease tolerance are currently being evaluated. The original trees seem to be holding up pretty well in the field.
  • ‘US Early Pride’: Nearly seedless irradiated ‘Fallglo’ selection; early ripening, good color and taste when ripe; may have some level of tolerance to HLB

Orange-like hybrids

  • FF-1-75-55: Very orange-like in all respects with early ripening and good juice color; can be peeled by hand when ripe
  • FF-1-75-113: Relatively small, sometimes tapered fruit with very good orange-like juice
  • FF-1-76-50: Early ripening orange-like fruit with excellent juice color and rich orange-like taste
  • FF-1-76-51: Relatively small orange-like fruit with very good juice color and orange-like taste; may be slightly later ripening than the others in this group
  • FF-1-76-52: Larger fruit than most in this group with early ripening and excellent color inside and out; flavor is very rich and tastes like high-quality orange juice with a touch of mandarin
  • ‘Jackson’: Low-seed version of ‘Triumph’ grapefruit; white-fleshed with a mild grapefruit taste; appears to be
    noticeably more tolerant to HLB than pure grapefruit

Irradiate FF-1-42-65 (‘Fortune’ x ‘Encore’) selections

  • FF-1-22-79: Relatively small-fruited mandarin type with good exterior and very good interior color; excellent taste and easy peeling with a low seed count
  • FF-1-23-130: Slightly larger fruit than FF-1-22-79 with a few more seeds; otherwise similar
  • FF-1-24-48: Similar to FF-1-23-130, but it’s too early to choose between them

Pummelo hybrid selections

  • Ftp-6-17-16: This sweet-tasting pummelo hybrid features very pretty red flesh and thin skin.
  • Ftp-6-17-48: Mild, somewhat grapefruit-like taste with red interior color

We hope to see as many of you as possible at this year’s displays. Participants are encouraged to complete the available forms, so that we have data to share with the breeding teams. It is generally best to complete the survey first, then visit with attendees and exchange notes.

Juice is sometimes produced from round oranges and orange-like selections on display, but not always. This will be done when time and staffing allow.

If you are not presently in the New Varieties Development and Management Corp. database to receive invitations and reminders about variety displays, field days, etc. send your email address to [email protected].