'NuMex Camino' was developed by Chris Cramer and Joe Corgan of the Department of Agronomy and Horticulture. 'NuMex Camino' is an open-pollinated, early-maturing, single-centered, high-yielding, bolting-resistant, pink-root-resistant, yellow, round globe onion for fall seeding in southern New Mexico. 'NuMex Camino' originates from a cross between ‘Excel 986B’ and a pink root and bolting resistant selection of ‘Texas Early Grano 502’ (‘TEG 502 PRR BR’) in 1980 (Fig. 1). Seed was collected from the ‘Excel 986B’ parent population only and planted. The following year, two separate selections were made. For each selection, yellow bulbs that possessed early bulb maturity, uniform maturity, pink root resistance, bolting resistance, round globe bulb shape, uniform shape, hard bulb firmness, light bronze to bronze scale, multiple scale layers, and thin scale were selected. In 1982, selected bulbs were intercrossed with two bolting and pink root resistant selections of ‘Texas Early Grano 502’. Seed was collected from each parent population, kept separate from each other, and planted as separate lines. The following year, selections were made within each line using the fore-mentioned selection criteria and were kept separate.
'NuMex Camino' is a short-day, round globe onion that matures from May 9 to May 15 when fall seeded in Las Cruces, NM. Suggested planting dates at Las Cruces are September 15 to 20. 'NuMex Camino' matures earlier from fall seeding than other cultivars. It has excellent bolting resistance and will tolerate early seeding dates. ‘NuMex Camino’ exhibits pink root resistance comparable to later maturing varieties. It has a marketable bulb yield, an average bulb size, and a percentage of single centered bulbs that is comparable to later maturing yellow varieties. ‘NuMex Camino’ produces round globe bulbs that possess good firmness and multiple light bronze dry outer scale layers.
Replicated field trials were conducted in 1999-2000, 2000-2001, and 2001-2002 comparing ‘NuMex Camino’ to ‘NuMex Chaco’, ‘NuMex Mesa’, and ‘NuMex Sweetpak’. In each year, ‘NuMex Camino’ matured six to ten days earlier than the other yellow varieties tested. ‘NuMex Camino’ produced fewer seedstalks than ‘NuMex Sweetpak’ and had bolting resistance comparable to ‘NuMex Chaco’ and ‘NuMex Mesa’. For two years, ‘NuMex Camino’ produced a marketable bulb yield comparable to the other varieties tested. In the 2000-2001 test year, ‘NuMex Camino’ produced smaller bulbs than the other varieties and this difference in bulb size resulted in lower bulb yield when compared to the other tested varieties. The smaller bulb size could be attributed to earlier maturity of ‘NuMex Camino’ as compared to the other varieties. In each year, ‘NuMex Camino’ produced a higher percentage of single centered bulbs than ‘NuMex Mesa’. For the past two years, ‘NuMex Camino’ produced a percentage of single centered bulbs comparable to ‘NuMex Chaco’, a variety known for producing a high percentage of single centered bulbs.
Currently, 'NuMex Camino' is being offered for exclusive release. Interested parties should contact the New Mexico Crop Improvement Association, MSC 3CI, Las Cruces, NM 88003. Application for Plant Variety Protection will be filed.