Retrospect and prospect of strategy for improvement in grape (Vitis spp.) in India
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Germplasm management and improvement in grape started since 1956 at the ICAR-Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi-110012. The total collection of germplasm of grape during 1956-2001, as shown in the register maintained at the Division of Fruits and Horticultural Technology of the Institute, was 552 (115 indigenous, 437 exotic). The ICAR-IARI, New Delhi continued to supply the grape germplasm on demand to other research institutions including IIHR, Bengaluru, state agricultural universities, AICRP Centres, etc. With the passage of time, the number of germplasm, however, depleted at IARI, New Delhi and IIHR, Bengaluru due to some unfavorable field conditions. The present status of germplasm collections reported by AICRP Centres is 60 at ICAR-IARI, New Delhi, 18 at PAU, Ludhiana, 51 at Rajmata Vijayaraje Sciendia Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, KNK College of Horticulture, Mandasaur (M.P.), 55 at ICAR-IIHR, Bengaluru, 426 at ICAR-NRC for Grapes, Pune and 62 cultivars and 29 wild species at Agharkar Research Institute (ARI), Pune. At ICAR-IIHR, the grape germplasm is being multiplied and maintained at its Central Horticultural Experiment Station, Hirehalli (Karnataka). Molecular markers ISSR, AFLP, RAPD and microsatellites have been developed for the analysis of germplasm genotypes. This will help in identifying confusing variety names and progenitors of genotypes of unknown origin. Many accessions of grape rootstock are available at NRC for Grapes,Pune and IIHR (CHES, Hirehalli). Rootstocks 1613C, Dogridge, SXR, 99Rc1. 13ES, Vitis parviflora, Vitis longii So-4c1. 762 Ramsey, Degrasset and 11 OR (Vitis berlandieri x V. rupestris) had vigorous growth at CHES, Hirehalli. Degrasset had deeper root system and vigorous growth at ARI, Pune. Promising introductions identified earlier at ICAR-IARI, New Delhi for table use include Cardinal, Gold, Muscat Oliver, New Perlette and Sultanine-II. These varieties should also be evaluated along with Red Globe under AICRP (Fruits) for their suitability in different agro-climatic conditions. Agro-techniques need to be developed if these varieties are found promising under specific condition. Grape breeding work with selection and hybridization was initiated at the ICAR-IARI, New Delhi in 1962. Emasculation in grape is a tedious task. IARI selected reflex stamen type (functionally female) varieties as female parents to get rid of the process of emasculation and doing pollination direct with male parent. Shift of strategies of grape breeding work at different places as well as at different times in the same organization necessitated change of parent varieties in hybridization. The strategies of the previous work have been mentioned in the text of the manuscript. Future strategy of grape improvement work has also been discussed aspect-wise for taking up the programme in a systematic manner. In the beginning, Pusa Seedless grape variety having more elongated berry was selected as a clone of Thompson Seedless. Early ripening black seedless variety Beauty Seedless, an introduction from California (USA) and mid-season selection Pusa Seedless were released by IARI for commercial cultivation. Perlette, another early and seedless variety, is an introduction from California. This variety was recommended by the IARI New Delhi and PAU, Ludhiana for growing in North India. Inter-varietal hybridization resulted in many promising hybrids and varieties. Pusa Urvashi (table, raisin), Pusa Navrang (juice, wine), Pusa Aditi for table use and Pusa Trishar (table and raisin) were released by IARI, New Delhi. Eleven varieties were released by ICAR-IIHR, Bengaluru for table use and juice and wine making. Manjri Medika (juice) was released by ICAR-NRC for Grapes, Pune for commercial cultivation. Clonal selections Tas-a-Ganesh, Manik Chaman and Sonaka from Thompson Seedless and Khushdil from Anab-e-Shahi are under commercial cultivation. Manjri Naveen, a clonal selection from Centennial Seedless, has been released by ICAR-NRC for Grapes, Pune for commercial cultivation as table and raisin variety and Manjri Medika for wine making. The information available on inheritance of vegetative characters, plant sex types and fruit characters will enable breeder in formulating grape breeding programme successfully. Embryo rescue culture technique will be helpful in interspecific hybridization, which would otherwise fail to set fruit and also when both seedless varieties are used as parents which normally do not develop viable and germinable seed.
Grape, Improvement, Breeding, Varieties, Yield, Quality, India.