Inbreeding, Coancestry, and Founding Clones of Almonds of California, Mediterranean Shores, and Russia

in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
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  • 1 Ecole Nationale d'Agriculture, B.P. S/40, Meknes, Morocco
  • | 2 Department of Pomology, University of California, Davis, CA 95616
  • | 3 Department of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

The mean inbreeding and coancestry coefficients were calculated for almond, Prunus dulcis (Miller) D.A. Webb, cultivars from the United States, France, Spain, Israel, and Russia. To improve cultivars to meet market demand, the recurrent use of four selections as parents in U.S. breeding programs has resulted in a mean inbreeding coefficient (F) of 0.022 in this collection. In France, a single cultivar, Ferralise, has an inbreeding value of F = 0.250, while cultivars of other almond-producing countries are noninbred (F = 0). Due to the use of common parents, U.S., Russian, and Israeli cultivars share coancestry, while coancestries also exist between French and Spanish almond germplasm. Cultivars of known parentage in the United States, Russia, Israel, France, and Spain trace back, respectively, to nine, eight, three, four, and three founding clones. Future almond-breeding programs may narrow the genetic base and thereby limit genetic gain.

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