NuMex Centric was developed by Professor Joe Corgan of the Department of Agronomy and Horticulture. It was developed from Peckham Yellow Sweet Spanish (YSS) intercrossed with several other long-, intermediate-, and short-day varieties. In 1978, Peckham (YSS) was enclosed in a crossing cage with: Tucker YSS, Utah YSS, El Capitan, Inca, Ring King, Colorado #6, Ben Shemen, Yellow Granex, and a New Mexico selection from a group of lines supplied by Dr. Grant Vest of the USDA. The USDA lines were representative of the very long-day response types commonly grown in the northeastern US. Seeds were saved from each parent, and planted for a second recurrent intercross (seed to seed) in 1979. NuMex Centric was developed by six recurrent mass selections from seed produced by the Peckham YSS parent population that resulted from the recurrent intercrosses. NuMex Centric is thought to be in 'N' cytoplasm. The frequency of the nuclear ms genes, if any, is unknown. (Left is a picture of NuMex Centric (98).)
Criteric for selection included: pink root resistance, bulb firmness, bulb shape, maturity, and single centers. Pink root screening was done in infested fields at bulb maturity. Screening for single centers was done by cutting the selected bulbs transversely and retaining only those that were single-centered. NuMex Centric was tested in 1993 and in '94 as 9240. In 1995 a seed increase from 9240 was tested as 9471.
NuMex Centric is an early Sweet Spanish type variety. At Las Cruces, when direct seeded on the spring, maturity has varied from July 16 to August 4, depending on the year. The August maturity dates in 1994 and '95 are unusually late. NuMex Centric consistently matured earlier (3 to 6 days) than Armada. The normal maturity date for Armada at Las Cruces is about July 25, and this would suggest the normal maturity for NuMex Centric to be approximately July 20 to 23. When transplanted, NuMex Centric matured 10 days to two weeks earlier than when directed-seeded. NuMex Centric has excellent pink root resistance, and yields on pink root infested land generally have been excellent. Bulb shape is uniform and round for medium size bulbs to a flattened globe for larger sizes. Scale color is medium yellow, similar to that of Utah YSS, and not nearly as dark as that of the Peckham YSS parent. Bulbs are firm to hard. NuMex Centric produces a high percentage of bulbs with single centers, and is rated highly for use as a processing variety for onion rings. In 1995, in a planting that produced more than 50 percent 'jumbo' and 'colossal' sized bulbs, no double bulbs were produced. The single ring characteristic is an important advantage for fresh market as well as processing onions. NuMex Centric is suggested for spring seeding in southern New Mexico from January 15 to March 1 for mid- to late- July harvest for fresh or ring processing markets. Also, transplanting about March 1 has given excellent results.