Better, Stronger, Fresher

Central Florida Ag News|January 2020

Better, Stronger, Fresher
In their constant quest to find the best genetic traits to help plants stand up better to heat, drought, flood, pests and pathogens and to find the tastiest fruits, UF/IFAS breeders develop new varieties each year.
Brad Buck

We’re showcasing some of the top cultivars of 2019.

“UF/IFAS faculty work tirelessly to develop improved plant cultivars needed by Florida’s agricultural industries,” says John Beuttenmuller, director of the Florida Foundation Seed Producers, a direct support organization of the University of Florida. FFSP works closely with UF/IFAS Research.

“Whether it be a tomato, zoysia grass or oat with improved disease resistance, a blueberry with excellent fruit size and machine harvest potential, or a sweet orange with improved quality, they are all examples of UF/IFAS plant breeders answering the call to improve the prospects of profitable production in Florida for years to come,” Beuttenmuller says. “These releases showcase the diversity of the strengths in UF/ IFAS’ plant-breeding programs.”

The following five – in no particular order – were chosen as featured UF/IFAS cultivars of 2019 based on current projected market impact. Also included are reasons the breeders think these cultivars are so good for stakeholders:

“Colossus” (U.S. Patent Pending) – a new blueberry variety.

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January 2020