Flat peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch var. platycarpa] is a variant of ordinary peach with a unique flat shape. It is well known for its shape and delicious fruits (Miao et al. 2022). Although flat peach has a long history of cultivation in China, until the beginning of the 20th century, flat peach was only distributed as a minor variety in the main peach-producing areas of China. In terms of flat peach cultivars, only 46 of the 709 peach cultivars listed in Peach Genetic Resource in China (Wang et al. 2012) are flat peach cultivars, and most of them are flat landraces. Several problems have been noted previously in flat peach cultivars, including poor closure of the blossom end (blossom-end scarring in mild cases and cracking in severe cases), cracked stone in some cultivars (loss of commercial value in severe cases), nonsymmetrical fruit shape, small flesh, and low yield (Wang 2021). Many of the shortcomings of flat peach cultivars are intrinsic problems of the cultivars, which are difficult to improve through cultivation measures. This is the key factor limiting the large-scale promotion of flat peach cultivation in China.
For many years, peach breeders in China have been devoted to the genetic improvement of flat peach, and some improved flat peach cultivars have been released, for instance, ‘Pocket Zaoban’ (Jiang et al. 2007) and ‘124 Pantao’ (Ma et al. 2003). However, problems persist in these cultivars, including small fruits, soft flesh, and blossom-end cracks. Only a few flat peach cultivars have good overall performance. In recent years, the Zhengzhou Fruit Research Institute (ZFRI), Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), identified genetic sources of flat peach with slow or nonmelting flesh, a well-closed blossom end, and little or no cracking. They were hybridized with high-quality peach and nectarine cultivars or selections. After multiple generations of improvement, breakthroughs were made in early flat peach breeding, and a series of flat peach cultivars with excellent comprehensive traits have been produced. These cultivars are favored by fruit farmers in the main peach-producing areas in China. Hence, the main problems in flat peach cultivation are expected to be solved, which will help expand the cultivation area of flat peach.
‘ZhongPan 101’ and ‘ZhongPan 102’ are two yellow-flesh flat peach cultivars 45 released from the ZFRI, CAAS. These two cultivars produce large, well-shaped, high-quality fruits with a completely closed stylar end and high yield. Three years of evaluation has confirmed that the peach trees of the two cultivars are stable. ‘ZhongPan 101’ and ‘ZhongPan 102’ were well adapted to climate of the middle and lower reaches of the Yellow River; have performed well in Henan, Jiangsu, and Anhui Provinces; and are suggested for trial wherever ‘ZhongYouPan 9’ is grown.
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Ma RJ, Yu ML, Du P, Guo H, Song H. 2003. Evaluation of germplasm resources and breeding of flat peach. Acta Hortic. 620:161–167. https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2003.620.16.
Miao YL, Wang ZQ, Meng JR, Zeng WF, Pan L, Cui GC, Niu L. 2022. ‘Zhongyoupanweimei’: A flat nectarine cultivar from the Zhengzhou Fruit Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences. HortScience. 57(12):1520–1521.
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Pan L, Niu L, Wang ZQ, Zeng WF, Lu ZL, Cui GC. 2021. ‘CN 15’, a new early ripening and storable peach cultivar. Guoshu Xuebao. 38(1):142–145. https://doi.org/10.13925/ j.cnki.gsxb.20200247.
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