The genetical control of the everbearing habit and three other characters in varieties of fragaria vesca
A genetical study was made of three diploid varieties of Fragaria vesca, namely, wild type and two cultivated Alpine varieties, “Baron Solemacher” and “Bush White”. The varieties differ in several characters, including flowering habit, runnering habit, branching habit and fruit colour. Wild type is seasonal flowering, produces runners, has a simple branching habit and has red fruit. Both the Alpine varieties have a perpetual flowering (everbearing) habit and produce no runners. “Buron Solemacher” resembles wild type in branching habit and fruit colour, whereas “Bush White” has a very bushy habit (i.e., has a large number of crowns per plant) and has white fruit.
Wild type F. vesca was crossed with the two Alpine varieties, and the F1 progenies were selfed and back-crossed to the Alpine parents. The results indicate that the differences in flowering habit are controlled by a single major gene, seasonal flowering being dominant to perpetual flowering, the recessive alleles in the two perpetual flowering varieties apparently being identical. Differences in runnering habit also appear to involve a single gene locus but non-runnering is associated with the bushy habit in “Bush White” and therefore either the three alleles of the same gene occur or the gene controlling bushiness in separate but closely linked with the gene controlling runnering. Fruit colour is controlled by one major gene locus, red being dominant to white fruit. All three major genes segregate independently. In all cases the characters of the wild type are dominant. The possible nature of the physiological process controlled by the gene for flowering habit is discussed.
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