Breeding vegetatively propagated horticultural crops

Melhoramento de hortaliças de propagação vegetativa

Horticulture is an important part of agriculture with many important crops being vegetatively propagated. The objectives of this work were to discuss some of the most important characteristics of vegetatively propagated crops and the breeding strategies to develop and propagate new cultivars. Vegetative propagation enables to fix favorable combinations of important traits, very specific chemical compositions, superior genetic variance interactions and high levels of heterozygosity. Breeding new cultivars involve few possibilities of genetic recombination by sexual reproduction and many generations of selection and vegetative propagation. Marker assisted selection should be useful for genotyping and selecting complementary parents for crossing and for identifying superior genotypes at early stages of selection. The tissue culture technique enables to get disease free stock plants and to maximize its multiplication rate, having an important role in yield and quality of these crops.

root and tuber crops; micropropagation; rapid propagation; clonal selection; new cultivars

Crop Breeding and Applied Biotechnology Universidade Federal de Viçosa, Departamento de Fitotecnia, 36570-000 Viçosa - Minas Gerais/Brasil, Tel.: (55 31)3899-2611, Fax: (55 31)3899-2611 - Viçosa - MG - Brazil