Coconut News

PROJECT SEEKS TO DEVELOP MULTI-PARENT COCONUT HYBRIDS TOLERANT TO DISEASES, DROUGHTS, AND STRONG WINDS

A continuing project sees the potential of developing multi-parent coconut hybrids as an effective strategy to combat insect pests and diseases, enhance tolerance against drought and strong winds, and increase nut and oil yield. The proj­ect, “Development of Multi-parent Coconut Populations using Outstanding Dwarf and Composite Varieties for Increased Yield and Tolerance against Biotic and Abiotic Stresses,” was recently reviewed by the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development of the Department of Science and Tech­nology.

Led by Mr. Gerardo B. Baylon of the Philippine Coconut Authority-Zamboanga Research Center (PCA-ZRC), the project aims to develop new coconut hybrids with multi-parents using dwarf and composite varieties. Multi-parent populations are hybrids produced by crossing different multiple varieties. Many of these have been successfully developed globally in other crops to improve resistance and yield.

The project utilizes three outstanding dwarf variet­ies such as Malayan Red Dwarf (MRD), Catigan Green Dwarf (CATD), and Tacunan Green Dwarf (TAGD), and two composite hybrids including BR x WB [Bago Oshiro Tall (BAOT), Renell Island Tall (RIT) x West African Tall (WAT), Baybay Tall (BAYT)], and BT x WR [BAOT, Tagnanan Tall (TAGT) x WAT RIT]. The project team has selected 36 palms per cross for the identified dwarf variet­ies as mother palms and 36 sample palms of the composite varieties. Aside from developing coconut hybrids, the project also aims to profile the fatty acids of eight composite varieties found at the Center to support virgin coconut oil production in the country.

Data Source: UCAP

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