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Tiemens-Hulscher, M., E.T. Lammerts van Bueren, A.M. Osman, J. Jeuken and R. Groenen. 2006. Participatory plant breeding: a way to arrive at better-adapted onion varieties.

Number of pages: 6

Type of document: Remaining

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More information on authors/freelancers connected to LBI :
Prof. dr. Edith T. Lammerts van Bueren Ph.D.


Language of document: English

Title in English: Participatory plant breeding: a way to arrive at better-adapted onion varieties

Abstract / summary in English:

The search for varieties that are better adapted to organic farming is a current topic in the organic sector. Breeding programmes specific for organic agriculture should solve this problem. Collaborating with organic farmers in such programmes, particularly in the selection process, can potentially result in varieties better adapted to their needs. Here, we assume that organic farmers' perceptive of plant health is broader than that of conventional breeders. Two organic onion farmers and one conventional onion breeder were monitored in their selection activities in 2004 and 2005 in order to verify whether and in which way this broader view on plant health contributes to improvement of organic varieties.
They made selections by positive mass selection in three segregating populations under organic conditions. The monitoring showed that the organic farmers selected in the field for earliness and downy mildew and after storage for bulb characteristics. The conventional breeder selected only after storage. Farmers and breeder applied identical selection directions for bulb traits as a round shape, better hardness and skin firmness. This resulted in smaller bulbs in the breeders’ populations, while the bulbs in the farmer populations were bigger than in the original population. In 2006 and 2007 the new onion populations will be compared with each other and the original populations to determine the selection response.


Keywords in English: organic varieties; participatory selection; R - response to selection, S - selection differential,onion (Allium cepa), segregating populations