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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Probable Qualitative Inheritance of Full Red Skin Color in Peach

Authors
item Beckman, Thomas
item Sherman, Wayne - UNIV. OF FLORIDA

Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 29, 2003
Publication Date: October 15, 2003
Citation: Beckman, T.G., Sherman, W.B. 2003. Probable qualitative inheritance of full red skin color in peach. HortScience. 38:1184-1185.

Interpretive Summary: Red skin color is a desirable trait contributing to the attractiveness of a peach. Previous reports on the expression and inheritance of red skin color have concluded that it was under the control of multiple genes. This limits the progress that can be made per generation in a breeding program since the average red skin color of a hybrid population has typically been midway between that of the two parents with only a very small portion of the offspring displaying significantly more red skin color than the most colored parent. We have discovered several peach varieties and selections that appear to possess a single recessive gene controlling full red skin color, even on shaded portions of the fruit surface. This trait profoundly accelerates red skin color development in ripening fruit often providing full red color development before any shift in ground color is observed. It should prove very helpful in fresh market peach breeding programs, since most place a high premium on red skin color development.

Technical Abstract: Red skin color is a desirable trait contributing to the attractiveness of a peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch]. Previous reports on the expression and inheritance of red skin color have concluded that it was under the control of multiple genes. However, we recently observed hybrid populations which provide evidence for the presence of a single gene controlling full red skin color. The fruit of seedling populations of UFQueen x Springbaby, UFQueen x Springprince, FL93-12C x Springprince, FL92-22C x BY79P1945, and AP98-18 OP were evaluated during the 2000 and 2001 fruiting seasons. Fruit were rated to the nearest ten percent red color at the full ripe stage, i.e., when soft for melting type fruit and yielding for non-melting type fruit. At this stage of development, full red phenotypes have developed red color over the entire surface of the fruit, including the stem cavity and portions of the fruit shaded by leaves or stems. The data from all populations provided evidence for qualitative gene action. Both crosses with UFQueen yield populations displaying a 1:1 segregation rating for partial red:full red. All other crosses produced populations that did not deviate significantly from a 3:1 segregation ratio. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that the 'full red' phenotype is a single gene recessive trait. If subsequent investigations confirm this, we propose the gene symbols fr and Fr for the recessive full red and dominant partial red (wild-type) alleles, respectively. This trait should prove useful in the breeding of fresh market cultivars as red blush development in the full red phenotypes is profoundly accelerated providing very high percentage red blush at the 'shipping ripe' stage, i.e., as ground color starts to change from green to yellow.

Last Modified: 4/18/2014