Location: National Clonal Germplasm Repository2010 Annual Report
1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
Strategically expand and improve genetic resource collections and associated information for priority fruit, nut, and other specialty temperate climate crops (and their wild relatives), especially, hazelnut, strawberries, hop, mint, pear, currants, gooseberries, brambles, blueberries, cranberries, hardy kiwifruit, and other small fruits. Strategically characterize, genotype and phenotype, priority fruit, nut, and other specialty crop genetic resources adapted to temperate climates for key traits such as genetic variability, adaptation, product quality, and other horticultural traits. Efficiently and effectively conserve and regenerate priority fruit, nut, and other specialty crop genetic resources adapted to temperate climates, and distribute disease-free samples and associated information worldwide.
1b. Approach (from AD-416)
Plant exploration expeditions will be taken in North Africa, Central Asia, Northern Europe for pome fruit and in China, Japan, Russia, Korea, Central and South America for berry crops. Plants from these areas will fill current gaps. Collecting trips will occur in collaboration with foreign scientist and quarantine officials. Horticultural and botanical experts in taxonomy will be consulted to verify the identity of accessions. Primary collections of woody plants will be maintained in field collections. Primary collections of herbacious perennial genera will be maintained in a screenhouse and repropagated. Duplicate plants will be maintained on site. Available plant materials will be distributed for research purposes. Backup hazelnut collection will be maintained in Parlier, California. Backup of small fruit, mint, and hop will occur on site. Tropical or sub tropical accessions will be protected from temperature extremes. Core collections will be propagated in vitro and in cryogenic storage at NCGRP, Fort Collins. Primary collections will be tested for pathogens and infected accessions will be subjected to therapy procedures to develop pathogen free replacments. Microsatellite fingerprinting sets will evaluate genetic diversity and determine clonal identity of blueberries, strawberries, hazelnuts, and pears. Clonal collections will be evaluated for high priority phenotypic characters including phenology, plant habit, fruit characters, and incidence of naturally occurring disease. Molecular and phenotypic information will be loaded to the public GRIN database. Formerly 5358-21000-033-00D (3/08).
3. Progress Report
This report serves to document the research conducted under project 5358-21000-038-00D Management of Temperate Adapted Fruit Nut and Specialty Crop Genetic Resources and Associated Information. New plant material was acquired from Hokkaido and Honshu, Japan and the United States. More than 10,000 plant accessions were maintained at the Corvallis repository. Plant material was backed up in Ft. Collins, CO. Improved protocols for tissue culture and cryogenics of temperate fruit crops were developed. More than 5,000 accessions were distributed. Phynotypic and genotypic plant information was loaded to the germplasm resources information network. Hop plants were tested for hop stunt viroid. Phytoplasma testing was continued on strawberry and hop. The hazelnut collection was monitored for, and protected from, eastern filbert blight. The Repository was certified free of sudden oak death. Identities of hazelnut, blueberries, hops, pears, strawberries, and raspberries were determined by molecular marker technology of simple sequence repeated DNA. More than 15 physically or mentally challenged individuals were trained or worked at the Corvallis Repository Genebank during the previous year.
1. Genetic Resource Conservation of Fruit, Nut and Specialty Crops. Crop wild relatives of temperate, fruit, nut, and specialty crop germplasm are threatened in the wild and should be preserved to maintain plant diversity for food security. During FY2010 ARS scientists at the Corvallis, OR genebank preserved more than 10,000 living plant and seed accessions of 30 genera of fruit and nut crops. New germplasm was acquired from Hokaido and Honshu Japan and the United States. Seed lots of strawberries were regenerated. More than 5,000 were distributed. The plant distributions provide research material for international geneticists for crop improvement and genetic study, for plant nurseries, for new fruit crop sales and distribution, for hobbyists, and the general public.
2. Backup of Plant Genetic Resources of Fruit and Nut Crops. If only one copy of a plant genotype is preserved in a genebank it is vulnerable to disease, climate change, or disasters, or could be lost for future scientific access. Scientists at the Corvallis, OR genebank are working with those at Ft. Collins, CO, Parlier, CA, and Palmer, AK to back up active collections using whole plants, tissue cultures, and cryogenic preservation (long-term freezing). A backup clean hazelnut orchard in Parlier, CA maintains 125 trees. Seeds and tissue cultures of hazelnuts, strawberries, hop, mint, pears, currants, gooseberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and ligonberries have been sent for long-term storage in Ft. Collins. Mint and currant and gooseberry plants have been sent for backup storage in Parlmer, AK. Backup collections of these invaluable plant genetic resources will keep these genotypes alive for improving American agriculture now and in the future.
3. Pathogen Detection and Elimination in Germplasm Collections. Diseases for fruit, nut, and specialty crops are spreading within the United States, and new diseases are being discovered. Scientists at the Corvallis, OR genebank have been maintaining hazelnuts free of eastern filbert blight. The Corvallis genebank continues to be certified free of sudden oak death by the Oregon Department of Agriculture. Berry plants were tested and found to be free of viruses. Testing and disease-free certification allow plant materials at the repository to be freely exchanged without spreading diseases.
4. Evaluation and Identification of Genetic Resources of Fruits. Descriptive evaluations and identity confirmation of temperate fruit, nut, and specialty crops are important to plant breeders, researchers, plant nurseries, and growers. ARS scientists in Corvallis, Oregon evaluated genetic profiles, plant physical characters, cold hardiness, and disease resistance for crops at the repository. These data were added to the publicly accessible US National Germplasm database (GRIN). Breeders, growers, and plant nurseries use this information to better develop, grow and produce improved crops.
Bassil, N.V., Postman, J.D., Hummer, K.E., Sezer, A., Botu, M. 2009. SSR Fingerprinting Panel Verifies Identities of Clones in Backup Hazelnut Collection of USDA Genebank. Acta Horticulturae. 845:95-102.