Preservation of genetic diversity of sweet cherry in Czech Republic

F. Paprstein, J. Sedlak, P. Brandova
From the point of view of human diet, sweet cherry provides a delicious fruit, which is rich in sugars and minerals. In the Czech Republic, sweet cherries are eaten seasonally out of hand or traditionally used in sponge cakes, desserts, fruit salads, juices, sorbets, ice cream, yoghourts or in distilled beverages. In Central European conditions, the earliest sweet cherries are the first fresh seasonal topfruits. On the other hand, late sweet cherry cultivars are gaining popularity in commercial growing systems due to higher return. There were 850 ha of commercial sweet cherry plantations (mostly late varieties) registered in the Czech Republic in 2018. Numerous landraces of sweet cherry for example ‘Chlumecká’, ‘Hořická Pumra’, ‘Libějovická raná’, ‘Těchlovickᒠarose in different regions of the Czech Republic from medieval times. They were named after locality of distribution and typical for certain areas. These landraces represent the most valuable part of genetic diversity. They are well adapted to the soil-climatic conditions of a particular region. Displacing traditional landraces in modern agricultural systems and continuing destruction of old plantations and alleys contributed to a considerable loss of genetic diversity in Central Europe. Because of the possible extinction of these valuable genotypes, the program for collecting and long-term conservation of sweet cherry genetic resources has been carried out in Research and Breeding Institute of Pomology in Holovousy Ltd. (RBIPH). Rescue of sweet cherry landraces is described in this presentation. Collecting missions were directed to the regions not influenced by modern agricultural production. Important accessions were localized by global positioning system (GPS) and in situ registered. Sweet cherry landraces showed a high variation in tree size, productivity, ripening time, fruit size, quality, and disease resistance. The most important cultivars found were: ‘Karešova’, ‘Kaštánka’, ‘Napoleonova’, ‘Thurn Taxis’, ‘Velká černá chrupka’, ‘Ladeho pozdní’. Selected accessions were characterized and transferred to the field genebank of RBIPH. Germplasm preservation of sweet cherry in field conditions is supplemented using biotechnical methods (in vitro cultures, cryopreservation).
Paprstein, F., Sedlak, J. and Brandova, P. (2021). Preservation of genetic diversity of sweet cherry in Czech Republic. Acta Hortic. 1307, 123-126
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2021.1307.19
Prunus avium, genetic resources, landrace, in situ, rescue, biodiversity

Acta Horticulturae