ON-FARM BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION: THE RC FRUIT CONSERVATION FARM
The RC Fruit Conservation Farm, a coconut plantation with a gently rolling terrain and clay loam soil, was acquired in 1986 to be intercropped with fruit-bearing trees. First planted to different outstanding cultivars of rambutan and langsat, other fruit and nut species were collected over the years and established in the Farm. To date there are 220 edible fruit species grown in the Farm, distributed in 124 plant genera and 54 families. In terms of geographic origin, 48 species are indigenous to the Philippines, 137 are from tropical Asia, Oceania and the Pacific, 76 are from tropical America and 8 are from tropical Africa. The Farm has also collected and established 136 outstanding fruit cultivars, most of which are officially registered with the National Seed Industry Council of the countrys Department of Agriculture. The Farm characterizes collected species and evaluates promising fruit trees. As a result, four standing seedling trees have been registered as new fruit cultivars. The Farm also determines the best propagation methods for newly acquired fruit species. As a result, seed germination techniques, asexual propagation methods and graft-compatibility combinations have been established for many species. The Farm has identified 24 underutilized fruits with economic potential as new crops for dessert and 30 underutilized fruits with economic potential as new crops for processing. The Farm serves as a laboratory for instruction, research and development and technology transfer and as a show room of a unique three-tiered planting system, different asexual propagation techniques, multiple-rootstock and topworking techniques, and, by grafting, making dioecious fruit species functionally monoecious.
Coronel, R.E. (2013). ON-FARM BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION: THE RC FRUIT CONSERVATION FARM. Acta Hortic. 979, 559-568
ex situ conservation, fruit and nut, Phillipines, underutilized