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New plum rootstock selections with low vigor and high capacity of propagation

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Authors: I. Botu, E. Turcu, M. Botu
Issue: 99V-1 (83-91)
Topic: Plant Production
Keywords: Plum, rootstock, breeding, vigor

Romania is one of the main European plum growing countries. As a consequence, intensive breeding programs for plum cultivars and rootstocks were carried out during the last 30 years. The results of the rootstock breeding program materialized in obtaining of 11 new rootstocks. These are of medium or high vigor with the exception of 'Oteşani 8' rootstock, which has low vigor (semi-dwarf). 'Oteşani 8' assures to the grafted cultivars a similar vigor as 'Pixy' and 'Saint Julien A', but is more adapted to heavy and thin clay soils (over 20% clay). Its compatibility with the majority of plum cultivars is very good, even with cultivars of 'Tuleu gras' and 'Reine Claude d'Althan' types. During the last decade, through hybridization and selection rootstocks of low vigor were obtained. They have a high capacity to propagate through hard wood cuttings in "bottom heated" special installations. The rootstocks selections are originated into the 'Scolduş' x 'Pixy' (H 38-6-88, H 38-5-88) and 'Oteşani 8' x 'Prunus besseyi' (H 31-1-88, H 31-30-88) crosses. The capacity of propagation through hardwood cuttings is high for these selections (64-72% of rooted cuttings). Through promoting new rootstocks of lower vigor, the plum growing system is substantially modifying; from 400 trees/ha, densities of 800-1200 trees/ha can be easy achieved.

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