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Planasa is opening up a new experimental centre in Murcia

The company has just opened up an experimental centre in La Hoya del Campo, which will allow it to find out how to adapt its varieties best
Fruit Today had the chance to talk to Paco Murillo, the person in charge of fruit trees.
What is the aim of this experimental centre?
Inland Murcia is one of the most dynamic production areas and we want to see the adaptability of our varieties to this climate and soil on site, as well as being as close as possible to the Murcian fruit growers.
Which varieties give the best results and adapt best?
I think that these could be the Zincal 2 nectarine and the white-fleshed peach, Plawhite 15, during the second week of May. Both are highly coloured and are very productive. In the yellow-fleshed peach sector, the Plagold 9 shows the best results, which is harvested from the 25th of April onwards.
In general, one of the targets is to obtain varieties that are very tough, highly coloured and with high sugar levels, characteristics that allow the fruit to be able to travel to distant destinations.
There seems to be a deficit in yellow-fleshed peach varieties, but there is interest in the produce having a greater presence on the markets again.
Yes, indeed. It seems that there is an interest to recover this fruit. Planasa has been carrying out research for many years and it has a line of common characteristics and two calendars: one that covers the very early dates (from mid April to June) for Huelva, Seville, Murcia, with the Plagold 9, 11, 14 and 16 and another later one, with the Sweet line (Plagold 19 Sweet and Plagold 22 Sweet) for Badajoz and Lerida.
What are the references for white-fleshed peaches?
Every year we start off the campaign with the Plawhite 5, a very early peach which, under plastic in Huelva, can be harvested from the 28th of March onwards, with some optimum characteristics of colour, resistance and 12 brix degrees. We also have the Plawhite 15, which is becoming very popular in Valencia and I think will work very well in Murcia. Its calibre is around AA and 12 or 13 brix degrees.
What can you tell me about flat peaches?
We have some extremely early varieties. The yellow-fleshed Platurno 5 is harvested from the 10th or 15th of April, which is a completely new idea. After this, we have the white-fleshed Blanvio 10. Another of the new varieties is the Blanvio 9, from the same variety line, with improved calibre and colour.
Is there still a long way to go for flat nectarines?
Yes, at the moment it is an unfinished business project. As breeders, we have not managed to obtain a suitable variety, but it is a question of time and I am sure that it will have its boom, in the same way as the flat peach. Planasa has Planasol 50 Sweet.
But the most important segment is the yellow-fleshed nectarine. What is Planasa contributing here?
The Zincal 2 is a highly-coloured fruit that can be grown under plastic in very early areas. This is followed by the Zincal 3, the 8 and the 11. We have great expectations for the 11, as well as for the Zincal 17, which is harvested from the 20th of May. From this date onwards, we start June with the Sweet line, with the Zincal 18 Sweet and the Zincal 25 Sweet and we close June with Zincal 30 Sweet, already well-known with 14 brix degrees, slightly acid- flavoured and highly resistant for transport.
Isn’t Planasa’s current calendar very focussed on the first months of production?
At present it is, but we have already started trials with the later varieties, specifically with the Sweet line at our Sariñena centre, in Huesca.

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