HAZELNUT BREEDING AND PROPAGATION IN ROMANIA
The Romanian ecological conditions, especially the climatic ones are very variable so that the adaptation of foreign cultivars released at the beginning of the 20th century was not successful.
The market demands for hazelnuts have been increasing therefore, special programs for hazelnut culture are initiated.
The major factors involved in the extension of hazelnut culture in Romania are:
- a national breeding program aiming at a good adaptability of those cultivars under Romania's climatic conditions;
- foreign cultivars field trials in various regions for establishing the best assortment under different climatic conditions;
- a quick propagation of valuable cultivars.
The hazelnut breeding program was initiated in 1972 at the Fruit Research Station Vilcea.
The aims of this program are very complex including cultivars both for the inshell trade and processing, exhibiting the following features:
- good climatic adaptability;
- increased (over 1.500 kg/ha) and constant productivity;
- high and competitive kernel quality;
- winter hardiness;
- late blooming season;
- pests and diseases resistance.
Simultaneously with the breeding program, the propagation techniques were settled in order to produce planting stock and to establish commercial orchards.