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Syrian pear (Pyrus syriaca) as a pollinator for European pear (Pyrus communis) cultivars


Syrian pear (Pyrus syriaca) as a pollinator for European pear (Pyrus communis) cultivars



Scientia Horticulturae 125(3): 256-262



ISSN/ISBN: 0304-4238

DOI: 10.1016/j.scienta.2010.03.013

In Israel four European pear cultivars are grown: 'Spadona' is the main cultivar and 'Coscia', 'Gentile' and 'Spadochina' are its pollinators. However, molecular S-genotyping revealed that 'Spadona' is semi-compatible with its three pollinators. This explains, at least in part, the relatively low pear yield in Israel. The Syrian pear (Pyrus syriaca) grows wild in Israel and blooms intensively, overlapping the blooming of the cultivated European pears. Cross-fertilization between Syrian pear and 'Spadona' was shown to be efficient suggesting that Syrian pear might be a potent pollinator for 'Spadona'. Twenty-six Syrian pear seedlings, from different sites in north-east Israel were S-genotyped identifying 11 that are fully compatible with the four European pear varieties cultivated in Israel. By this screening, 24 different S-RNases were cloned; ten of them are new, whereas the other fourteen had been identified previously. In addition, seedlings of two wild pear species were also S-genotyped. Two seedlings from Pyrus betulifolia and one from Pyrus korshinskii were found to be genetically compatible with the four European pear cultivars. From these seedlings four S-RNases were cloned, two are new, one had been cloned previously and one was identical to an S-RNase allele cloned from Syrian pear in this work.

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