|Author: ||D.K. Sharma|
The mango cultivars, presently in cultivation, have all originated from superior chance seedlings during ancient times.
Consequently, many of these, though excellent in one respect or the other, are lacking in some desirable characters like precocity, dwarfness, regularity and prolificity of bearing, etc.
Attempts to evolve ideal varieties through breeding have met with little success because of indiscriminate inter-crossing of varieties, inefficient techniques of hybridization which resulted in insufficient hybrid populations for selection in this highly heterozygous crop, lack of knowledge of the inheritance pattern prevailing in mango, absence of pre-selection criteria to facilitate early identification of promising hybrids and, above all, lack of continuity of work.
During the last 25 years or so, answers to many of these problems have been obtained to hasten the process of evolving improved varieties through planned hybridization programmes.
Some useful information on mutation breeding has also been obtained.
All these will be helpful in developing dwarf plant types, having improved fruit quality, which could lead to more profitable utilization of shrinking land resources through high-density orcharding.
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