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Genetic variation of Citrus and related genera with ornamental potential
- Alanna Rachel Andrade dos Santos, Everton Hilo de Souza, Fernanda Vidigal Duarte Souza, Michaella Fadini, Eduardo Augusto Girardi, Walter dos Santos Soares Filho
- Euphytica 2015 v.205 no.2 pp. 503-520
- Citrus madurensis, Fortunella, Microcitrus, Poncirus, Triphasia trifolia, cassava, container-grown plants, floriculture, fruits, gene banks, genetic variation, genotype, hybrids, landscaping, mandarins, ornamental plants, plant breeding
- The interest in Citrus and related genera as ornamental plants has increased in recent years, motivating studies aimed at identifying genotypes, varieties and hybrids suitable for this purpose. The Citrus Active Germplasm Bank of the Embrapa Cassava & Fruits, a research unit of the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation—Embrapa, contains more than 750 accessions with wide genetic variability, and their utilization for ornamental purposes is the objective of this study. For this purpose, we characterized 37 accessions with ornamental potential, classified in four categories for use in floriculture: potted plants, minifruit, hedges and landscaping. Through the use of 39 quantitative and qualitative morphological descriptors, the following accessions stood out for use landscaping and as potted plants: ‘Variegated’ calamondin, ‘Nasnaran’ mandarin, ‘Chinotto’ orange, ‘Trifoliate limeberry’, ‘Papeda Kalpi’, ‘Talamisan’ orange, ‘Wart Java’ lime, and ‘Chinese box-orange’, besides accessions of the genera Fortunella, Poncirus and Microcitrus. Among the accessions identified as having potential for use as minifruit plants, the common ‘Sunki’ mandarin was the most suitable, and in the hedge category, ‘Chinese box-orange’ and ‘Trifoliate limeberry’ stood out. The results obtained provide information to support citrus breeding programs for ornamental purposes.