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Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative Report 18: v-vii (Introduction) 1995

18th Annual CGC Business Meeting (1994)

The 1994 CGC Annual Business Meeting was held at Oregon State University on 9 August 1994 in conjunction with the 91st Annual Meeting of the American Society for Horticultural Science. There were twenty CGC members and other interested individuals in attendance.

Tim Ng began the meeting by giving an update on the CGC Reports. CGC Report No. 17 (1994) was the largest Report ever, and approached the size limit for the binding process currently used. In addition, Report No. 17 was the first to be issued in a multi-column format. The CCG Report is currently indexed by CAB (Plant Breeding Abstracts) and AGRICOLA.

The "Call for Papers" for CGC Report No. 18 was discussed, and it was generally agreed that "camera-ready" restrictions would be eased on submissions since virtually all reports are edited and word-processed by the Coordinating Committee currently.

In a related vein, the digitization of CGC back issues was discussed for a possible inclusion on a CD-ROM. This issue is being pursued with the National Agricultural Library as a possible project for their electronic information effort. Meanwhile, it was suggested that digitalization of CGC back issues could be initiated by apportioning it to current CGC members, in particular J. McCreight, T.C. Wehner, J. Staub and T. Ng.

Costs are increasing for the CGC Report, and Tim indicated that while CGC finances were okay for the moment, increased publication costs and the postal increases scheduled for 1995 may mandate an increase in membership fees. CGC membership fees were last raised in 1988.

The rotation of the Coordinating Committee was discussed. In accordance with CGTC By-Laws, the ten-year term of the current members will expire for Gary Elmstrom (melon) in 1995. J. Brent Loy (Cucurbita spp.) in 1997, Dennis Ray (watermelon) in 1999, Mark Hutton (other genera) in 2001, and Jack Staub (cucumber) in 2003.

The membership vote on By-law changes was reported. The proposal to allow more than five members to serve on the CGC Gen List Committee was approved with a vote of 52 positive, two negative and three abstentions. The proposal to limit the required back issue availability to the most recent five issues was approved with a vote of 54 positive, no negative and three abstentions. One member had written to suggest that the rotating color format for CGC Report covers be abandoned in favor of the same color every year, however, in attendance at the business meeting were unanimous in their desire to retain the current format. There as also a motion by Todd Wehner (seconded by Linda Wessel-Beaver) to donate back issues of the CGC Report to libraries if they were willing to subscribe to CGC in the future.

An announcement of the current status for Cucurbitaceae '94 (South Padre Island, Texas) was made.

Under new business, Jack Staub raised the issue of establishing core collections for cucurbit crops. He briefly summarized his recent CGC papers on the cucumber core and opined that the current core for cucumber (with 800 accessions) was too large. Norm Weeden provided his observations on the core collections for apple and pea, and a lively discussion followed.

19th Annual CGC Business Meeting (1995)

The 1994 CGC Annual Business Meeting will be held on Monday, 31 July,.1995, in conjunction with the 92nd Annual Meeting of the American Society for Horticultural Science (ASHS). The meeting will be from 8:00 to 9:00 a.m. in room 409C of the Montreal Convention Center. (The meeting will immediately follow the ASHS Genetics and Germplasm WG meeting, which begins at 7:00 a.m.) We hope to see you there.

U.S. Cucurbit Crop Germplasm Committee (CCGC) Update

J.D. McCreight, USDA, ARS, Salinas, California USA

CCGC (formerly the U.S. Cucurbit Crop Advisory Committee) held its 11th meeting in South Padre Island, Texas, in conjunction with Cucurbitaceae '94. Kent Elsey's retirement and Jon Watterson's transfer to Europe created two vacancies on the Committee. They will be replaced with persons of similar research disciplines (entomology and plant pathology).

GRIN completed its move to a new database (Oracle) for better data entry. PC GRIN is available for DOS; a Macintosh version will be available in1995. GRIN will soon be accessible via Internet and a CD-ROM version is being developed. A PC GRIN version is being produced for underdeveloped countries. Approximately 800 copies of PC Grin have been distributed. The Core Concept is continuing to develop for germplasm collections, and CCGC is continuing its development of the concept on cucumber.

The De-Accession sub-committee continues to review the National Seed Storage Laboratory cucurbit collection for duplicates. Old cultivars should be included as PI accessions in NSSL. Henry Munger will publish a list in CGC of those to be grown-out for increase/determination of similarity. Cultivar names are being added to GRIN.

Recent activities at the four Regional Plant Introduction Stations with cucurbit accessions were reviewed. Geneva: There is concern for maintenance of C. maxima; much work needs to be done to improve the infrastructure (greenhouses, irrigation system); increases are being delayed until such improvements are made. CCGC was requested to help determine the most important/critical accessions for increase. Ames: More accessions were being backed-up at NSSL. More PIs were sufficiently increased in 1994 and are again available for distribution. Laura Merrick reviewed Cucurbita accessions and will be helping to correct some species identifications. Pullman: Ray Clark requested support for grow-out station at Parlier, California near the UC station, for Cucurbita accessions. In addition, Laura Merrick is finishing the report on her project to increase cucurbit accessions.

Four proposals were received and forwarded to the National plant Germplasm System:

  1. Evaluation of the U.S. Plant Germplasm Collection of Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) for Resistance to Bacterial Fruit Blotch (Acidovorax avenae subsp. citrulli). Investigator: D.L. Hopkins.
  2. Genetic Diversity in Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) and Melon (Cucumis melo L.) Accessions. Investigators: J. Staub and J. McCreight.
  3. Evaluation of Cucumis Germplasm for Resistance to Zucchini Yellow Mosaic Virus, Papaya Ringspot Virus-W, and Watermelon Mosaic Virus. Investigators: J.D. Norton, J. M. Dangler and G.E. Boyhan.
  4. Evaluation of the U.S. Plant Introduction Collection of Luffa (Luffa aegyptiaca Mill.) for Sponge Yield, Earliness and Quality. Investigators: T.C. Wehner, J.M. Davis and T.L. Ellington.

Larry Hollar successfully lobbied the USDA Agricultural Marketing SErvice, Seed Regulatory and Testing Branch, Livestock and Seed Division, for interchangeable use of 'melon", 'muskmelon" and "cantaloupe," resulting in proposed amendments to the Federal Seed Act regulations.

15th Annual Meeting of the Watermelon Research Group (WRG)

Ray D. Martyn, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX

The Watermelon Research Group met in New Orleans on Sunday, January 29, 1995, in conjunction with the Southern Association of Agricultural Scientists (SAAS) and the Southern Region of the American Society for Horticultural Science (SR:ASHS). Twenty five people were in attendance.

Don Maynard (US-AREC, Bradenton, FL) presented an account of his and Gary Elmstrom's trip to Japan for the International Watermelon Summit in July, 1994. He indicated that a world library has been established and there was a world collection of watermelon germplasm on display. The price of melons in Japan was astounding. Watermelons were as much as $1.40/lb. or $40-50 apiece. Cantaloupes ranged from $50-75 apiece.

Don Hopkins (US-AREC, Leesburg, FL presented an update on the watermelon fruit blotch (FB) disease. He indicated that there was a cooperative effort between seed corporations, research personnel, and transplant operations to solve this problem. Recommendations for growing melons for seed production are to grow in dry climates and where FB does not occur. Seed infection can be as high as 50% in some cases. The fruit does not have to show symptoms in order for the seed to be infected. The best seed treatment was 24-72 hr. fermentation in 1% HCl, but this reduced the germination slightly to 85-90%. Greenhouse spread in transplants is favored by overhead irrigation and high humidity (70%). Spread is very much limited below 50% RH. Spread of FB in the field is enhanced by rain events and overhead irrigation and is higher in spring crops than in fall crops. The wild citron was susceptible to FB in the laboratory; however, infected citrons have not found in the field. Don also reported that copper resistance has been detected in some isolates of the FB bacterium. Southern states with confirmed reports of fruit blotch include Florida, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina, and Texas.

Tom Garrett (Pee Dee-REC, Florence, SC) reported on FB trials in 24 triploid lines. The diploid pollinator had 90% fruit infection while the triploid fruit range from 10-30%. He indicated that the FB bacterium can persist in seed for at least 5 years. Marty Baker (TAES, Overton, TX) reported on a 4-year seedless watermelon variety trial in which over 25 varieties were evaluated. He reported that FB was not seen in any of the lines. He recommended a reduced spacing (6-8') for triploids with one row of pollinator for three rows of triploids with two active bee hives per acre. The size of the fruit continued to increase with averaging 18-20 lbs currently. He is trying to develop a 22-28 lb triploid melon.

Frank Dainello (TAES, College Station, TX) reported on the progress of the fusarium wilt screening nursery being established in east Texas (Overton). They are still in the process of building up uniform inoculum of FON race 1 and race 2 throughout the fields. Commercial testing of lines is still 1-2 years away.

Charlie Johnson (LSU, Calhoun, LA) reported on his progress in developing a watermelon with resistance to FON race 2. Several lines look very promising. Joe Norton (Auburn, AL) reported on his screening program for ZYMV and the fusarium wilt resistance in Au-Producer. Dan Egel (American Sun Melon) gave an update on the gummy stem (Didymella bryoniae) research grant. Research is concentrating on the epidemiology and infection process and the development of a PCR seed detection method.

16th Annual Watermelon Research Group Meeting

The next meeting of the Watermelon Research Group will be in Greensboro, NC on Sunday (1:00 PM - 4:00 PM), February 4, 1996, in conjunction with SAAS and SR:ASHS. For more information, contact Ray Martyn at 409-845-7311 (voice) 409-845-6483 (fax) or (e-mail).

Cucurbitaceae '94

Evaluation and Enhancement of Cucurbit Germplasm was held in November 1994 at the Radisson Resort on South Padre Island, Texas. It was hosted by the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station and Extension SErvice and the USDA-ARS Subtropical Agricultural Research Laboratory. Nearly 200 people were in attendance, representing a multitude of countries and disciplines.

Cucurbitaceae '94 provided a forum for the presentation and exchange of scientific information about germplasm evaluation and enhancement research activities on cucurbit crops. The program consisted of poster presentations, invited talks, and panel discussions on diseases, host-pest interactions, and genetics related to the enhancement of cucurbit germplasm. Molecular and genetic aspects of disease, germplasm, resources, breeding strategies, and the physiology of fruit quality were covered. Meetings of a number of commodity - specific cucurbit groups also took place in conjunction with the conference.

The Proceedings for Cucurbitaceae '94 is currently being assembled and should be available by Summer 1995. All participants will receive a copy of the Proceedings, and a limited number of extra copies will be available for purchase. For more information on the Proceedings, contact Jim Dunlap. Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, 2415 East Highway 83, Weslaco, TX 78596 USA (Phone: 210-968-0641; Fax: 210-968-5585; E-mail:

Cucurbitaceae '96

The Sixth EUCARPIA Meeting on Cucurbit Genetics and Breeding, will be held in Malaga, Spain, on 28-30 May 1996. The preliminary agenda looks quite interesting, and preliminary registration forms have been distributed to interested individuals. If you have not received one and are interested in attending, you can contact the conference organizers at "EUCARPIA CUCURBITACEAE 96, Experimental Station "La Mayora", 29750, Algarrobo, Malaga, Spain." (The fax number is 34-52552677.) The last meeting of this group was in Poland in 1992.

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Page citation: Wehner, T.C., Cucurbit Genetics Cooperative;
Created by T.C. Wehner and T. Ng, 1 June 2005; design by C.T. Glenn;
send questions to T.C. Wehner; last revised on 1 August, 2007