Biotech Updates

Texas Center Aims for Drought Tolerant Melons

September 23, 2011

Researchers at the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Uvalde are developing improved varieties fo drought-tolerant crops. In particular, they are looking at melons that also meet consumer preference in terms of size, shape, color, texture, firmness and sugar content.

"We're looking into improved varieties of melons, such as cantaloupe and honeydew, and are growing and assessing some Spanish and Italian specialty melons that are relatively new to this area," said Dr. Daniel Leskovar, Texas AgriLife Research vegetable physiologist and interim center director.

Leskovar also explained that they were interested in the possibility of "specialty melons such as Tuscan-type melons with orange flesh, Galia-type melons with green flesh and canary types with near-white flesh, from the perspective of how they might fare as a high-value, high-income crop for Texas producers. We've also been examining the effects of factors such as deficit irrigation on their growth and productivity."

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