[NAFEX] advice on Aronia selections

Hal Love lovehd at comcast.net
Tue Jan 2 11:18:48 EST 2007


I only have grown a seedling of 'Nero', so I can't give you any advice based
on personal observations. However, I came across an interesting paper
recently (Hovmalm, et al.) which described the results of genetic analysis
of both cultivated and wild Aronia. The better known cultivars of Aronia,
'Nero', 'Viking', 'Aron', and Aronia melanocarpa var elata, along with any
seedlings from them, were found to be genetically identical or at least
indistinguishable from each other at the genetic level. There are both
diploid and tetraploid races of Aronia, and these are all tetraploid. They
appear to either reproduce via apomixis, or they are so highly inbred, the
seedlings cannot be genetically distinguished from the parents. The
different cultivars may be sports of the same genotype, as there are some
differences reported for a few traits such as height. There is also a report
that 'Nero' has a higher anthocyanin content than 'Viking' and 'Aron' (but
identical in variety elata), and that 'Aron' has somewhat higher sugar
levels. However, these differences could be due to environmental variables.
The 4x versions typically produce identical seedlings, while the diploids
typically reproduce sexually and are highly variable.

The biggest difference you will likely see between the named selections, and
their seedlings will be the seedlings will have a juvenile period, and take
longer to fruit. Otherwise, there will likely be little difference. If you
are interested in the paper describing this work, let me know.

zn 6b, TN

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mark and Piper" <piper33 at verizon.net>
To: "North American Fruit Explorers" <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Monday, January 01, 2007 2:09 PM
Subject: [NAFEX] advice on Aronia selections

> I currently do not have any Aronia growing in my Seattle-area edible
> landscape. I saw some bushes at a local park recently that were loaded
> fruit. I did some research on-line and found that the sugar levels can be
> very high, around 24 brix, and read that the 2nd most popular ice cream
> flavor in Poland is Aronia (what is the nost popular?). My New Year's
> resolution is to add this fruit to my garden. As far as yield and flavor
> goes, Nero gets the best reviews. What do you guys say? I also noticed
> Raintree offers both named selections and seedlings. Has anyone had any
> interesting results experimenting with Aronia seedlings?
> -Mark Lee, Seattle

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