Author Topic: Broccoli breeding advice  (Read 367 times)

Troppo

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Broccoli breeding advice
« on: 2019-01-09, 03:58:56 AM »
Hi all, Iím aiming to start a project looking to create an open pollinated sprouting broccoli that resembles broccolini. Iím just wondering does anyone have any experience working with brassicas and can share some advice or insights? My first aim will be to cross and get as much diversity as possible and select for sprouting types.

Joseph Lofthouse

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Re: Broccoli breeding advice
« Reply #1 on: 2019-01-09, 09:08:33 AM »

Broccoli hybrids are often made using cytoplasmic male sterility. The flowers don't have anthers, so they can't produce pollen. On my own farm, I prefer to avoid growing plants with sterility problems. Therefore, I wouldn't use F1 hybrids as parents for a broccoli breeding project.


William S.

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Re: Broccoli breeding advice
« Reply #2 on: 2019-01-09, 01:35:47 PM »
The first step of a breeding project is to trial or try existing varieties. So if you haven't already try a lot of prospective parents. See which ones work for seed saving in your area. If you can save the seeds they might be good prospective mothers.
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Raymondo

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Re: Broccoli breeding advice
« Reply #3 on: 2019-01-09, 04:57:51 PM »
Pretty straight forward saving seed Troppo. I have a kale mix which I plant and add to from time to time. I just let the insects do the pollinating work. I only save seed from the central stem. These seeds seem to be bigger but that might be just wishful thinking on my part.

To create a broccolini type, Iíd start with any of the sprouting types plus kailaan. If you arenít going to hand pollinate just plant them cheek by jowl. If one starts to flower before others just cut it back. I did this in the starting years of my kale mix because they didnít want to flower at the same time.

Identifying crosses might be tricky. You could just grow Purple Sprouting plus a kailaan and save just from kailaan. Crosses would be easy to identify. Just a thought. You may want much more diversity than just these two would give.
Ray
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Carol Deppe

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Re: Broccoli breeding advice
« Reply #4 on: 2019-01-09, 09:48:47 PM »
Broccoli and Gai Lohn are both Brassica oleracea. B. oleracea varieties often have an incompatibility system. You can tell whether they do by just planting a single plant in relative isolation. If it's self-incompatible, you will get little or no seed.

When that's the situation, you can make crosses by just putting pairs of plants in semiisolation. Say make a short row of gai lohn about 8 inches away from a short row of broccoli. Then cull to a good plant of each, with them being an isolated pair with branches intermingled so many bee trips are between the different varieties. You can get all crosses this way, and hundreds of pods, without doing any hand pollination. It depends upon the two chosen parent plants having different incompatibility genes. But when they are different varieties, often they do.

Troppo

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Re: Broccoli breeding advice
« Reply #5 on: 2019-01-10, 05:40:04 PM »
Thanks for all the advice. My plan was to use both purple and white sprouting broc and breed them to Kai-Laan but to also cross the purple and white to a green sprouting broc. Iíd then cross the Kai-Laan and green sprouting crosses together. That way Iím hoping to get a lot of diversity as well as colours.