|COSBY, KEVIN - Texas A&M University|
|LESKOVAR, DANIEL - Texas A&M University|
|BUTCHER, JUSTIN - Texas A&M University|
Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/4/2013
Publication Date: 8/1/2013
Publication URL: http://hortsci.ashspublications.org/content/48/8/1059. full.pdf & html
Citation: Cosby, K.M., Fery, R.L., Leskovar, D.I., Butcher, J. 2013. ‘Caro-Tex 312’, a high yielding, orange-fruited, Habanero-type, F1 hybrid pepper. HortScience. 48(8):1059-1061.
Interpretive Summary: The increasing popularity of hot peppers in the United States has created intense interest in the Habanero. Open-pollinated cultivars of Habanero peppers are used extensively by U.S. growers and these cultivars have historically suffered from several deficiencies, including low yields, late maturity, disease and pest susceptibility, and lack of uniformity. Transition to F1 hybrid cultivars should result in greatly increased yields and uniformity, earlier maturity, increased disease and pest resistance, and superior fruit quality. In 2008, a cooperative effort was initiated by USDA and Texas A&M University pepper breeders to develop a high-yielding, Habanero-type, F1 hybrid pepper. These efforts resulted in the 10 October 2012 release of the high yielding, orange-fruited, Habanero-type cultivar CaroTex-312. The most outstanding attribute of the new cultivar is its ability to produce high yields, particularly high yields early in the season. Observations of a number of CaroTex-312 plantings in Texas suggest that the new cultivar has useful levels of resistance to Tomato spotted wilt and Pepper mottle viruses. Additionally, CaroTex-312 is heterozygous for a dominant gene conditioning resistance to the southern root-knot nematode. The release of CaroTex-312 will provide pepper growers currently growing open-pollinated Habanero-type cultivars access to a disease and pest resistant, high yielding, F1 hybrid cultivar.
Technical Abstract: The Agricultural Research Service of the U. S. Department of Agriculture and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences of Texas A&M University have released the high yielding, orange-fruited, Habanero-type, F1 hybrid pepper cultivar CaroTex-312. CaroTex-312 is the result of an F1 cross made at Charleston, SC, between TigerPaw-NR and UV88-2004. CaroTex-312 has a compact plant habit and produces campanulate-shaped (lantern-shaped), orange-colored fruit. The period from transplanting to first harvest of mature fruit is 76 to 85 days at Charleston, SC, and College Station, TX. The most outstanding attribute of the new cultivar is its ability to produce high yields (up to 167% higher than the TigerPaw-NR parent), particularly high yields early in the season (up to 103% higher than the TigerPaw-NR parent). A typical lantern-shaped CaroTex-312 fruit weighs about 10.12 – 11.78 g (13.26 g in a mulched test conducted at College Station, TX), and is 2.96 – 3.24 cm wide x 4.42 – 4.94 cm long. The fruit wall is thin (1.84 – 2.16 mm). The color of immature fruit is green (Munsell color rating: 5.3 GY 4.7/5.8); the color of harvest-stage fruits is a glossy, bright orange (Munsell color rating: 5.9 YR 5.5/8.9). The fruits are quite pungent (capsaicin content: 9,100 ppm, dry weight basis), and a typical fruit has three locules. Observations of a number of CaroTex-312 plantings in Texas suggest that the new cultivar has useful levels of resistance to Tomato spotted wilt and Pepper mottle viruses. Additionally, CaroTex-312 is heterozygous for a dominant gene conditioning resistance to the southern root-knot nematode. CaroTex-312 is recommended for trial by fresh market growers throughout the southern United States. The new cultivar produces large, attractive, orange-colored fruit that should appeal to most consumers of Habanero-type peppers. Additionally, the yield attributes of CaroTex-312, particularly its potential for producing high early yields, should be especially appealing to growers trying to widen their marketing window.