Submitted to: American Society for Horticultural Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/2/1997
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Lesquerella fendleri (Gray) Wats., Brassicaceae, is a potential oilseed crop native to the southwestern U.S. The seed oil contains hydroxy fatty acids, similar to castor. Unique properties of the oil, along with coproducts, allow additional applications that would not be in competition with castor. Plants with vestigial anthers were discovered in a bulk population growing in the greenhouse in 1993. The inheritance of the trait was investigated the following three crop seasons. Crosses were made among sterile and fertile plants and reciprocals among fertile plants. Chi-square results indicate the male sterility trait is expressed by a recessive nuclear gene with cytoplasmic influence restoring fertility. Cytoplasmic male sterile lines can be utilized for development of hybrids. Development of lines without male sterility should lead to higher yields than current bulk populations of lesquerella. Hybrid plants and higher yields will enhance the commercialization potential of this new, alternative crop.