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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Riverside, California » National Clonal Germplasm Repository for Citrus » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #316432

Title: Mission and modern citrus species diversity of Baja California Peninsula cases

item DE GRENADE, RAFAEL - University Of Arizona
item Krueger, Robert
item NABHAN, GARY - University Of Arizona
item CARINO, OLVERA - Universidad Autonoma De Baja California

Submitted to: Economic Botany
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/14/2014
Publication Date: 8/20/2014
Publication URL:
Citation: De Grenade, R., Krueger, R., Nabhan, G.P., Carino, O.M. 2014. Mission and modern citrus species diversity of Baja California Peninsula cases. Economic Botany. 63:263-282.

Interpretive Summary: Agriculture in Baja California Sur traditionally was centered on the oases present. Fruit trees of various sorts were originally introduced during the Colonial period starting in the 17th century. Currently, these heritage or mission types co-exist with more modern, recently introduced types. In the case of citrus, we have identified some possibly unique and old types that we describe. Some of these have been deposited in the National Plant Germplasm System.

Technical Abstract: The spring-fed mission oases of the Baja California peninsula, Mexico, hold several species, varieties and unique hybrids of heritage citrus, which may represent valuable genetic resources. Citrus species first arrived to the peninsula with the Jesuit missionaries (1697-1768), and new varieties were introduced during the colonial and rancho periods following the mission era. These heritage trees are grown in oasis field and house gardens in hedgerows and as ornamental, fruit and shade trees. Commercial citrus varieties introduced from the United States have become a strong source of economic revenue for peninsula agriculturalists. A few of the peninsula oases support commercial citrus groves, though these are primarily found in the broader valleys of the peninsula where groundwater is tapped for irrigation. The isolated environments of the mission oases and surrounding ranches have facilitated propagation of unique citrus types, and these have stabilized through integration in the cultural practices of the region. We identify and document citrus of the peninsula oases to serve as a baseline for those interested in the cultural ecology of citrus and citrus genetic resources.