Searching for the Next Pawpaw Cultivar: Unique Germplasm Selections At Kentucky State University

Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Desert Ballroom: Salons 7-8 (Desert Springs J.W Marriott Resort )
Kirk William Pomper , Kentucky State University, Frankfort, KY
Sheri Crabtree , Kentucky State University, Frankfort, KY
Jeremiah Lowe , Kentucky State University, Frankfort, KY
The North American pawpaw [Asimina triloba (L.) Dunal] is a tree-fruit that is in the early stages of commercial production. Pawpaw fruit have fresh market appeal for farmers markets, community supported agriculture, and organic markets. This fruit also has processing potential for frozen pulp production. New high yielding cultivars with excellent fruit quality would further assist in the development of the pawpaw industry. Kentucky State University serves as the National Clonal Germplasm Repository for Pawpaw. Two goals of the Repository research efforts are germplasm acquisition and evaluation. Three selections Hi7-5, Haz-1, and Hi 4-1 have been identified in the Repository collection with unique fruit types and promising new characteristics as new potential cultivars. Pawpaw varieties with fruit weights over 120 g per fruit are considered to have a large enough fruit size for commercial sale and processing. The selection Hi7-5 has a unique globular fruit shape, a pleasing orange flesh, and large fruit size (227 g). The selection Hi4-1 has a pleasing orange flesh and large fruit size (254 g). The selection Haz-1 has a pleasing dark orange flesh that would be excellent for processing and large fruit size (174 g). Two selections, Hi7-5 and Hi4-1, have been stably propagated via chip budding onto seedling rootstocks. Yield and fruiting characteristics will be examined for these selections. Haz-1 will be propagated this year to examine propagation success and characteristics of this selection.
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