Thirty-six cultivars and 948 seedlings from 15 controlled crosses in the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch] breeding program at Brownwood, Texas, were rated for susceptibility to nut scab [Cladosporium caryigenum (Ell. et Lang.) Gottwald] to determine heritability of this trait. Differences between parents and progenies, and within progenies, were highly significant. Within most families, a complete range of resistance reactions were evident, from fully susceptible to fully resistant. Heritability of resistance was determined by regressing individual progeny values on female, male, and midparent values, with the midparent heritability estimate being the highest (0.54). This moderate level of additive gene action and the identification of superior parents in this study will contribute to the efficiency of breeding resistant cultivars.
Thirteen cultivars of pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch] were monitored for bud break, pollen shed and stigma receptivity for 4 years at LSU Pecan Station, Robson, LA. Cultivars were generally consistent in displaying clear patterns of protogyny or protandry, although patterns were uncertain for some cultivars in some years. Mean dates of cultivar phenology varied significantly by year. Years with warm winter and spring temperatures had earlier seasons of growth and flowering than years with cooler temperatures. The duration of pollen shed and stigma receptivity varied between years. Protogynous cultivars, as a group, had greater bloom overlap than protandrous cultivars, although overlap varied between years for both dichogamy classes. The sequence of cultivar flowering relative to other cultivars varied between years, resulting in variable amounts of bloom overlap between cultivars in different years.
Putative resistance to the yellow aphid complex (Monellia caryella (Fitch) and Monelliopsis pecanis Bissell) in the `Pawnee' pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch] cultivar was first noted in greenhouse tests by rating cultivars for relative amounts of honeydew on adaxial leaf surfaces. This resistance was confirmed in two field tests monitored from mid-June to mid-Oct. `Pawnee' supported significantly lower aphid populations during every rating period when relatively large numbers of these insects were present. `Navaho' also showed resistance, with `Desirable' having intermediate resistance and `Stuart' being very susceptible. Insect populations were also monitored on the four quadrants of each tree, with this quadrant effect being significant in only one test. This test had the highest populations on the West and lowest populations on the East.
An assessment of leaf anatomic traits of pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) C. Koch] cultivars (Pawnee, Mohawk, and Starking Hardy Giant) collected from three locations (Tifton, GA; Chetopa, KS; and Stillwater, OK) was conducted to provide an understanding of patterns of ecogeographical variation within the natural range. Acetate casts of representative leaves were prepared for microscopic characterization of epidermal traits (stomatal density, stomatal index, and epidermal cell density). There were differences among the three pecan cultivars at the same location, but there were no differences in stomatal density within the same cultivar grown at three distinct locations. The stomatal density of ‘Pawnee’ leaves (404 stomata/mm2) was intermediate between that of ‘Mohawk’ (363 stomata/mm2) and ‘Starking Hardy Giant’ (463 stomata/mm2). ‘Pawnee’ had the greatest epidermal cell density (2511 cells/mm2) whereas ‘Starking Hardy Giant’ showed the least (1414 cells/mm2). Within a location, stomatal index differed significantly among cultivars, with ‘Starking Hardy Giant’ having a greater stomatal index than the other two cultivars. There were no differences in stomatal index across locations. ‘Mohawk’ had the greatest trichome density (18.92 trichomes/mm2) whereas ‘Starking Hardy Giant’ had the lowest (9.6 trichomes/mm2). The study suggests that differences in stomatal density and epidermal cell density in pecans are cultivar specific rather than being determined by environmental factors. The stability of certain leaf anatomic characteristics, such as stomatal and epidermal cell density, for pecan cultivars grown at different locations confirms that these traits can be used for screening provenances with desirable leaf anatomic characteristics for breeding and cultivar development.
Leaf anatomical traits of Mexican and U.S. pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch] seedstocks grown in a single location were studied to determine patterns of ecogeographic variation within the natural range. Stomatal density was uniform among open-pollinated seedlings of a common maternal parent with twofold differences in stomatal density separating some seedstocks. There was an inverse relationship between stomatal density and epidermal cell density. Stomatal density and stomatal index of Mexican seedstocks were related to longitude and annual precipitation of origin. Stomatal density increased along the longitudinal gradient toward the east coast of Mexico; seedstocks originating from areas on the east coast of Mexico had greater stomatal density than seedstocks originating from the drier areas on the west coast. Stomatal density and stomatal index did not follow a pattern along latitude or longitude in the U.S. seedstocks. Although isotopic carbon (13C) discrimination did not vary greatly in Mexican seedstocks, the reduction in stomatal density in pecan trees from areas with reduced annual precipitation suggest the presence of an anatomical feature to reduce water losses.
`Oconee' pecan (Caryaillinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch) was grafted on seedling rootstocks from nine open-pollinated seedstocks. Rootstocks included three seedstocks each of pecan, water hickory (C.aquatica (F. Michaux.) Nutt.) and their hybrid, Carya X lecontei (Little). Pecan seedlings had the largest basal diameter, water hickory seedlings the smallest, and hybrid seedlings were intermediate. Seedlings of `Elliott' and 'Curtis' seedstocks were larger than seedlings from `Moore' seedstock. Pecan and hybrid seedlings were more successfully grafted than water hickory. Graft success varied between seedstocks of the hybrid, with some as high as pecan. Foliage color of seedlings, indicative of iron nutrient status, was influenced by the species of rootstock: pecan seedlings were darker green than water hickory seedlings, but were inseparable from hybrid seedlings. `Oconee' scions on pecan seedlings were darker green than when grown on hybrid seedlings.
`Oconee' pecan [Carya illinoinensis (Wangenh.) K. Koch] scions were grafted on seedling rootstock from nine open-pollinated seedstocks. Rootstock included three seedstocks each of pecan, water hickory [C. aquatica (F. Michx.) Nutt.], and their interspecific hybrid, Carya × lecontei (Little). Pecan seedlings had the largest basal diameters and water hickory seedlings the smallest. Seedlings of `Elliott' and `Curtis' seedstocks were larger than seedlings from `Moore' seedstock. Pecan and C. × lecontei seedlings were grafted more successfully than water hickory. Graft success varied among seedstocks of pecan and C. × lecontei Foliage color of seedlings, possibly indicative of iron nutritional status, was influenced by species; pecan seedling leaves were darker green than those of water hickory seedlings, but similar to C. × lecontei leaves. `Oconee' scion leaves were darker green on pecan rootstock than when grafted on C. × lecontei rootstock.