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Graduate student enrollment in the plant sciences has decreased over the past several years, and there is increasing interest in recruitment/retention strategies. Before successful strategies can be implemented, however, the status of current plant science graduate programs needs to be determined. Survey data on graduate student demographics, research area, support levels, current recruitment strategies, and career opportunities were collected from 23 plant science graduate programs. Overall, 55% of graduate students in plant sciences were male and 45% were female; approximately 60% were domestic and 40% were international. Cellular/molecular biology and breeding/genetics were the two disciplines that had the greatest number of graduate students and the greatest number of job opportunities. Although most programs cited financial support as the biggest obstacle to recruitment, there was not a strong correlation between graduate student number/program and stipend amount. However, other funding factors besides stipend amount; such as stipend number, the guarantee of multiple years of support, the funding of tuition waivers, and health insurance costs, likely impact student number. As more of these costs are shifted to faculty, there appears to be an increasing inability and/or reluctance to invest grant funds (which support 60% of the plant science graduate students) in graduate student education. These data suggest that the decline in plant science graduate student enrollment may not be directly due to low stipend amounts, but rather to shifting of more of the total cost of graduate training to faculty, who may be unable/unwilling to bear the cost. There is also a clear shift in the research focus of plant science graduate students, as postdoctoral and career opportunities are weighted towards molecular biology/genetics, leaving the more applied plant science areas particularly vulnerable to low graduate enrollment.

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The vegetable industry is important to our nation as a provider of nutritious and safe food directly consumed by our citizens. It is also critical to a rich and vigorous national agriculture. During the 20th century, engineering innovations coupled with advances in genetics, crop science, and plant protection have allowed the vegetable industry in the U.S. to plant and harvest significantly more land with higher yields while using less labor. Currently, fresh and processed vegetables generate 16% of all U.S. crop income, but from only 2% of the harvested cropland. Yet, many of the challenges in production that existed a century ago still exist for many crops. Perhaps the most significant challenge confronting the industry is labor, often accounting for 50% of all production costs. A case study of the mechanized production system developed for processed tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum) confirms that systematic methodology in which the machines, cultural practices, and cultivars are designed together must be adopted to improve the efficiency of current mechanized systems as well as provide profitable alternatives for crops currently hand-harvested. Only with this approach will horticultural crop production remain competitive and economically viable in the U.S.

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A total of 21 and 28 standard and experimental varieties of yellow and white se- and sh2-type sweet corn (Zea mays) were planted in 1999 and 2000 in Fremont and Wooster, Ohio, which are separated by 193.1 km (120 miles) and contain different soil types. Data are reported here for a subset of these varieties (eight yellow, two white) showing a consistently high level of use in Ohio and planted in both years. Endosperm types were planted in distinct, parallel experiments separated by a minimum of 79.9 m (262 ft) at each site. A randomized complete block design with four replications per variety (V) per location (L) was used, with measures of 13 production- and market-based variables taken from emergence to 48 hours after harvest. Soluble solids 48 hours after harvest were greater at Wooster than Fremont in the sh2 study. Variety had a significant, independent effect on mean plant and ear height in the se and sh2 study, respectively, although further analysis of year × variety (Y × V) and location × variety (L × V) interactions suggested that V affected additional traits. On average, `Tuxedo' (se) and `HMX6383S' (sh2) had superior com-binations of grower- and consumer-oriented traits. However, varieties with the highest levels of percent emergence and marketable yield tended to have lower levels of soluble solids, regardless of endosperm type. Y × V interactions were primarily due to changes in the magnitude of values for individual varieties in each year, not from changes in their relative ranking. The Y × L × V interaction was significant (P ≤ 0.05) for marketable yield, plant and ear height, and the ratio of ear length to diameter in the se study, but zero variables in the sh2 study. Coefficients of determination (R 2) for selected plant and ear traits were unaffected by location. Overall, R2 values ranged from 0.04 (number of rows of kernels × ear diameter, sh2 study) to 0.83 (shank length × total ear length, sh2 study). These data reinforce that genetics strongly affect key traits in sweet corn and identify two potential top performers. The data also suggest that independent L or L × V effects may be minor relative to V effects, even when locations are separated by moderate distances and contain different soil types. Therefore, including more varieties but fewer sites may be warranted in future variety trials. The data also suggest that 1) ratings of variety performance should be based on objective measures of grower- and market-oriented traits and 2) shank length × total ear length and ear height × plant height relationships may be used to improve the efficiency of future evaluations.

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Mary Camp (Biometrical Consulting Service) for statistical analysis. This work was conducted with the cooperation of Miles Agriculture Division/Bayer Ag and Crop Genetics International. Mention of trade names or commercial products in this publication

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Plant breeding is an exciting agricultural discipline as it integrates a broad range of fields of study, such as genetics, crop science, horticulture, botany, biochemistry, molecular biology, pathology, entomology, and statistics. Because of the

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represented a pH treatment. Each student group received one petri dish, and no treatments were replicated. Starter activity. This activity was designed to give a brief overview about how pollen viability applies to plant breeding and genetics, and included a

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.R. Joyce, P. Waits, L.P. 2002 Assessing allelic dropout and genotype reliability using maximum likelihood Genetics 160 357 366 10.1093/genetics/160.1.357 Nelson, M.F. Anderson, N.O. Casler, M.D. Jakubowski, A.R. 2014 Population genetic structure of N

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, laboratory, and native populations of western flower thrips to spinosad HortScience 40 146 149 10.21273/HORTSCI.40.1.146 Mani, G.S. 1985 Evolution of resistance in the presence of two insecticides Genetics 109 761 783 10.1093/genetics/109.4.761 Mordue, A

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. Rabinowitch and J.L. Brewster (eds.). Onions and allied crops. Vol. I: Botany, physiology, and genetics. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL 10.1201/9781351075169-3 Coolong, T.W. Randle, W.M. 2003a Temperature influences flavor intensity and quality in ‘Granex 33’ onion

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pepper growth and fruiting response to uniconazole depends on application time HortScience 28 917 919 Stommel, J.R. Bosland, P.W. 2006 Ornamental pepper, Capsicum annuum , p. 561–599. In: N.O. Anderson (ed.). Flower breeding and genetics: Issues

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