Submitted to: Agricultural Research Service Publication
Publication Type: Government Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2005
Publication Date: 8/1/2005
Citation: Glaz, B., P.Y.P. Tai, J.C. Comstock, J.D. Miller, S.J. Edme, R. Gilbert, and J.Davidson. Evaluation of new Canal Point sugarcane clones: 2002-2003 harvest season. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, ARS-164. 2005. Interpretive Summary: Farmers in Florida need a constant influx of new sugarcane varieties. Due to changes in pathogens, varieties that were once resistant and productive can quickly become susceptible and not economical. Changes in farming practices also may lead to changes in variety preferences. For example, in Florida, farmers learned after they converted to a mechanical harvesting system that not all varieties remained economically viable. Variety development and selection can also have ecological impact. The Canal Point program seeks sugarcane varieties that will help Florida sugarcane growers provide water delivery and water quality to the Everglades that will help restoration efforts. The work described in this report, conducted during the 2002-2003 harvesting season, identified four promising varieties in their first year of expanded testing, five in their second year, and lead to the recommendation to release CP 96-1252 and CP 96-1602 for commercial production in Florida, both in their third year of testing. With about 177,000 ha of sugarcane, Florida, the leading sugar producing state in the U.S., produces about 25% of the sugar produced in the U.S. About 40,000 jobs and several rural economies are dependent on the constant influx of new Canal Point sugarcane varieties.
Technical Abstract: Farmers in Florida need a constant influx of new varieties of sugarcane, complex hybrids of Saccharum spp. Due to changes in pathogens, varieties that were once resistant and productive can quickly become susceptible and not economical. The purpose of this report was to compare the tonnage and sugar yields of 51 new Canal Point (CP) varieties in the 2002-2003 harvest season from plant cane, first ratoon, and second ratoon experiments with yields of reference varieties CP 72-2086 and CP 70-1133 in the final experimental stage of Florida's public sugarcane cultivar selection program. CP 72-2086 is the fifth most widely grown sugarcane variety in Florida, and CP 70-1133, the tenth most widely grown. Thirty replicated experiments were conducted on ten farms (representing five organic soils and two sand soils) to evaluate new CP clones of sugarcane from the CP 98, CP 97, CP 96, and CP 95 series. Each clone was rated for its susceptibility to diseases and cold temperatures. Several promising varieties were identified, and CP 96-1252 and CP 96-1602 were released for commercial production in Florida.