Preliminary study and preservation of traditional variegated cultivars of fig in the Balearic Islands

M. Pons Boscana
Among the hundreds of cultivars of fig trees in the world, there are only one or two dozen which show a very special and beautiful characteristic: they are variegated. The fruit of these cultivars alternates normal color stripes and lighter or white stripes. This particular trait is also always manifested in young shoots, and occasionally in leaves. It is suspected that it may be induced by a disease virus-like depigmentation resulting in the absence of chloroplasts in the stripes. This phenomenon is being studied to determine and understand the causes that provoke it. This study is taking place in the Son Mut Nou Test Field, established in 1989 in Llucmajor, Baleric Islands. There are 3080 fig trees planted including 1308 different cultivars of the world. Of these, 249 are autochtonous of the Balearic Islands, five of which are the “rimada” cultivars pertaining to this study. In the Balearic Islands variegated cultivars are known by the adjective “rimadas”, and there are five traditional cultivars, two with black-skinned fruits ('Martinenca rimada' and 'Bordissot negra rimada') and three with green-skinned fruits ('Bordissot blanca rimada', 'Paratjal rimada' and 'Coll de dama rimada'). There are 249 native cultivars in Balearic Islands, many at high risk of genetic erosion, the less cultivated and known, in addition to its rarity, there are five “rimadas” cultivars almost disappeared from the field of the Balearic Islands. Its recovery, cultivation and further study in the field of Son Mut Nou for plant heritage conservation, in this case these unique cultivars in the world, to ensure continuity for future generations and keep the precious legacy these jewels of nature.
Pons Boscana, M. (2017). Preliminary study and preservation of traditional variegated cultivars of fig in the Balearic Islands. Acta Hortic. 1173, 105-110
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2017.1173.18
Son Mut Nou, test field, Monserrat Pons, rimada, heritage fig cultivars

Acta Horticulturae