Breeding Better Walnut Rootstocks That Could Withstand Crown Gall
Elizabeth Fichtner is a farm advisor with UC Cooperative Extension, Tulare County. She and other researchers across the state are working on different genotypes for Walnut rootstocks.
“This project is specific to walnuts and there are multiple rootstock research plot throughout the state,” Fichtner said. “And so I'm hosting one in Tulare County and we're looking at how these different rootstocks perform in comparison to seedling Paradox, which is the grower standard. But there are three clonal Paradox rootstocks that are also commercially sold. So we're comparing them to the seedlings, but also some new genotypes that have been generated by the Walnut Improvement Program at UC Davis.”
And Fichtner said it's all about finding a better rootstock that can withstand crown gall.
“The major problem is that Paradox rootstock is susceptible to crown golf. So we're looking into bringing some different parentage in these rootstocks to see if we can include some resistance to crown gall, which is one of the major pathogens of Walnut,” she said.
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