Introgression of Allium fistulosum L. into interspecific hybrid backcrosses between A. fistulosum L. and A. cepa L

Martinez, L.E.; Galmarini, C.R.; Masuelli, R.W.

Acta Horticulturae 688: 109-115


ISSN/ISBN: 0567-7572
Accession: 004444827

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Allium fistulosum shows resistance to many diseases and pests of bulb onion, including pink root (Phoma terrestris). The introgression of resistance genes from A. fistulosum into A. cepa has been the objective of plant breeders for decades. F1BC1 populations were generated for this study, conducted in Mendoza, Argentina, by backcrossing A. cepa to A. fistulosum x A. cepa hybrids. The F1 hybrid and 538 F1BC1 plants from 4 populations were evaluated at plant maturity for the incidence of pink root disease, number of leaves, and bulb diameter. The F1 exhibited a pink root index similar to the resistant parent and the morphology was intermediate between the two progenitors, providing evidence that the cross took place. In general, the F1BC1 plants were much alike A. cepa, in relation to the susceptibility to pink root and morphology, while some of them showed A. fistulosum resistance with A. cepa bulbing ability. Although the F1 plants showed low fertility, recombination between A. cepa and A. fistulosum was achieved. At present, the backcross programme is being pursued to obtain onion plants resistant to pink root.