Trial And Error

Citrus Nursery Source: Trial And Error

New Varieties Development & Management Corp. (NVDMC) is a grower funded not-for-profit entity whose board is appointed by five citrus industry organizations. NVDMC is performing a valuable, though often invisible service for the Florida grower. In addition to providing variety research grant funding and serving as a central licensing arm for new citrus varieties, NVDMC is tasked with the identification and evaluation of new citrus varieties. NVDMC continually seeks varieties from other production areas that may have utility in Florida. Until now, all of these varieties have been planted in confidential trials, using a combination of private cooperators and an NVDMC managed block. Though confidential trials are beneficial, there is nothing as valuable as trees planted in a commercial setting by an eager grower. If planting and evaluating new mandarin varieties is of interest, this is your lucky day.

The September 2010 Citrus Nursery Source article highlighted the availability of the IFAS Sugar Belle and the University of California Tango. These varieties remain available for license through NVDMC for trial or commercial plantings. Several nurseries are increasing budwood and are positioned to take orders. In addition to Sugar Belle and Tango, NVDMC has four other University of California mandarins available for trial.

These varieties have not been released, but limited quantity of budwood is available for nurseries to start increase trees, and propagate for small scale trials with private growers. The names of these varieties may be familiar, as they have been around for some time in California, and are just starting into international production. All four are seedless tangerine types, and their collective anticipated maturity dates range from November through March.

Tahoe Gold

Three of the varieties are triploids derived from the same parental cross [(Temple x Dancy) X Encore]. These three are referred to as TDEs.
Tahoe Gold is the earliest of the TDE trio. This is a small/medium sized fruit with deep orange rind color (in California). Its estimated maturity in Florida would be November through December. The tree is fairly thorny, and it does tend to alternate bear (can be controlled with pruning, thinning, and canopy management). Most plantings to date have been mixed, so it is not known whether a pollinizer is needed to set fruit. This fruit does not hold well on tree for extended periods of time. The fruit does have good flavor. It peels “OK,” but not as well as the other two.

Shasta Gold

This fruit is large and moderately flat in appearance. It has a nice orange color rind, and is reasonably easy to peel (in California). The trees are somewhat thorny and also tend to alternate-bear. It has good flavor. Its estimated maturity is December through January. Like the others, it is not known whether a pollinizer is required. Use of a pollinizer would make sense in the early going. Fruit holds very well for extended periods of time.

Yosemite Gold

Like the Shasta Gold, this fruit is estimated to mature in the December through January window. The fruit is large and moderately flat. The fruit holds reasonably well on the tree, though not as long as the Shasta. Peelability and flavor are good (in California). Trees are somewhat thorny and tend to alternate bear. The pollinizer issue is the same. We have seen this fruit get a little puffy late in its maturity in California.

Gold Nugget

Gold Nugget is a cross between Wilking and Kincy. This variety is separate and apart from the TDE suite. Gold Nugget fruit is very similar in appearance and flavor to the Pixie. It is seedless in mixed plantings. Rind color is a gold-orange. It has very good flavor. It’s easy to peel and holds very well on the tree (up to June in California). It is estimated the fruit may mature as early as December, and it is hoped it might hold until March. Gold Nugget produces some viable pollen, so it can cause seediness in compatible varieties. In California, the Gold Nugget has been viable in all areas except the southern desert. Florida remains a question mark.

Opportunity Awaits

Nurseries interested in signing field trial propagation agreements will have an opportunity to start a budwood supply, in the event one or more of these prove to have commercial potential. For interested growers, the process, too, is simple. Sign an evaluation agreement with NVDMC and purchase trees from a licensed nursery (fees apply). Suggested plantings are two to 10 trees of each variety. Variety information sheets are available. If these varieties are successful, they will be available through NVDMC for commercial licensing. Contact the author for more information.

Leave a Reply

2 comments on “Trial And Error

  1. Dear Sir.
    I have created a new lime variety called the Merdeka lime. It is a cross between the Citrus hystrix (Kaffir lime) and the Citrus microcarpa (Calamansi) and accords with the DUS rules of Distinctiveness, Uniformity and Stability. It was registered in Malaysia with the Department Of Agriculture on December 16, 2010 under the Protection of New Plant Variety and Breeder’s Rights with the registration number of PVBT011/10.

    I have solely researched on it for the past 6 years and have also carefully looked after the plants for the last 4 years till they fruited recently. This new lime plant is highly fragrant and more resistant to pests and fungi than its predecessors. It grows well in hot and cool climates. It also suits well for landscaping with its very own new growth pattern.

    The main reason to my research and inventions of New Citrus Varieties was to contribute to increased food security and sustainable crop production .That which adapts well to our present climate changes and more tolerant to diseases’ and modern day pest besides serving the other economic benefits.

    Here is a link to the National press report by Star Newspapers on this.

    http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2010/9/1/nation/6951997&sec=nation

    This new lime has many uses for mankind and I am now turning to Agriculture Organizations and Deparments who have concerns to support or partner international poor but innovative farmers like me.

    I am all willing for this agriculture to take place in any country. I also wish to register this new plant variety in the US.

    I hope for your favorable reply.

    Thanking You.

    Warm regards

    Devandran

  2. Dear Sir.
    I have created a new lime variety called the Merdeka lime. It is a cross between the Citrus hystrix (Kaffir lime) and the Citrus microcarpa (Calamansi) and accords with the DUS rules of Distinctiveness, Uniformity and Stability. It was registered in Malaysia with the Department Of Agriculture on December 16, 2010 under the Protection of New Plant Variety and Breeder’s Rights with the registration number of PVBT011/10.

    I have solely researched on it for the past 6 years and have also carefully looked after the plants for the last 4 years till they fruited recently. This new lime plant is highly fragrant and more resistant to pests and fungi than its predecessors. It grows well in hot and cool climates. It also suits well for landscaping with its very own new growth pattern.

    The main reason to my research and inventions of New Citrus Varieties was to contribute to increased food security and sustainable crop production .That which adapts well to our present climate changes and more tolerant to diseases’ and modern day pest besides serving the other economic benefits.

    Here is a link to the National press report by Star Newspapers on this.

    http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2010/9/1/nation/6951997&sec=nation

    This new lime has many uses for mankind and I am now turning to Agriculture Organizations and Deparments who have concerns to support or partner international poor but innovative farmers like me.

    I am all willing for this agriculture to take place in any country. I also wish to register this new plant variety in the US.

    I hope for your favorable reply.

    Thanking You.

    Warm regards

    Devandran

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