Consumer Evaluation as an Adjunct to F1 Hybrid Seed Development of Hexaploid Chrysanthemums (Dendranthema grandiflora Tzvelv.)

in HortScience
Authors:
Neil O. AndersonDept. of Horticulture, Univ. of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN 55108

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Peter D. AscherDept. of Horticulture, Univ. of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN 55108

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James J. LubyDept. of Horticulture, Univ. of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN 55108

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The change from asexual to sexual propagation for annual and perennial bedding plants has been successfully accomplished for floral crops, e.g., Pelargonium. Seed-propagated cultivars do not necessarily possess the clonal uniformity of vegetatively propagated cultivars. In the development of F1 hybrid garden chrysanthemums, this lack of uniformity was assessed with the use of consumer sensory evaluations. Seedlings (n = 10–20 plants/cross) were transplanted for field trials in St. Paul and five Minnesota branch stations each year during 1988–94 to test for G × E. Early flowering F1 hybrids, developed from inbred parents with general combining ability, were evaluated for flowering earliness, plant uniformity, and a general rating. Consumer rankings of top performers were not significantly different (5% level) from mum breeders. The top performers for all three ratings were selected each year for repeat evaluation the next year. The two highest performing F1 hybrids were submitted for All American Selection Trials in 1995.

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