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Fruit Varieties Journal
(Fruit Var J)

American Pomological Society

Volume 38 Number 3 Article 7 Pages: 121-125
Year 1984 Month 7
Title: Sour Cherry Breeding in Eastern Europe
Author: A.F. Iezzoni
The origin and center of diversity for sour cherry (Prunus cerasus L.) is believed to be in the territory sur rounding the Caspian, Black, and Adriatic Seas (2). The wealth of sour cherry germplasm in this area is un doubtedly a major reason for the suc cess of the sour breeding program in the Eastern European countries. Over the centuries, superior trees were propagated by suckers and by grafting thereby establishing the local varie ties. At first, emphasis was placed on the collection of the better strains of local varieties and selection among these strains. These selections were subsequently crossed with cultivars, usually from Western Europe, which generally had better fruit quality Such breeding programs have proven highly successful and the first series of hybrids have been released and commercially accepted. The second breeding cycle will surely result in the release of even more promising hy brids.

The objective of this report is three fold: 1) to describe the original germplasm which formed the base of the breeding programs in Yugoslavia, Bul garia, Romania, Hungary, and Poland; 2) discuss the objectives of the breed ing programs in those countries; and 3) characterize the cultivars which have been most recently released.

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