PERFORMANCE OF NARITA BANANA HYBRIDS IN THE PRELIMINARY YIELD TRIAL FOR THREE CYCLES IN UGANDA
The Press release summarising information about the new banana hybrids
From the trial results, these hybrid varieties known as NARITA (NARO-IITA), performed better than the local check across all traits being evaluated. For example, 96% of the hybrids had a bunch weight greater than that of the local check. The bunch weight varied up to 28.4 kg, with an overall mean of 18.3 kg.
The vast majority of the bananas currently grown and consumed were not conventionally bred but are selections made over probably thousands of years from naturally occurring hybrids. Cultivated bananas are very nearly sterile and as a consequence are not propagated from seed but rather through vegetative propagation, primarily suckers as well as more recently micropropagated or tissue cultured bananas. These factors, very old selections, near sterility and vegetative propagation, mean that these bananas have not been genetically improved either for resistance or improved quality and are becoming increasing in affected by serious pests and diseases.
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