NuMex Crispy

Image of Crispy Onions

Professor Joe Corgan and Melvin Holland of the Department of Agronomy and Horticulture developed NuMex Crispy. It originated from a cross between Excel 986A and Temprana. Excel 986A is a male sterile (A) line selected from Yellow Bermuda. It is a male sterile commonly used to make 'granex' type hybrids. Temprana is a selection out of New Mexico White Grano, and was released by the New Mexico Agricultural Experiment Station in 1979. Both parents are very low in pungency. The F1 was backcrossed to Temprana [Temprana x (986A x Temprana)]. Yellow bulbs from the BC1 population were massed, and in the F2 generation following the backcross bulbs were selected for white color. Selection of yellow in BC1 eliminated the dominant 'l' gene for white color. Selection for white in BC1 F2 eliminated the dominant 'C' gene for color expression. The result is a genotype, 'icy,' which is recessive white for color. Following one mass selection, 300 bulbs were selfed, progenies were screened and 300 bulbs from selected progenies were selfed for a second generation. Bulbs form selected rogenies from the second self were massed, and one additional mass selection was made to produce 9263 (NuMex Crispy). (Pictured above is NuMex Crispy (99).)

Criteria for selection included: bolting resistance, pink root resistance, bulb firmness, bulb shape, color quality (absence of greening and buffing), and maturity. Bolting resistance screening was done in the field from early September plantings which had more than 75% bolting. Pink root screening was done in infested fields at bulb maturity. NuMex Crispy was tested in 1993, '94, and '95 as 9263. In 1995, a seed increase from 9263 was tested as 9411.

NuMex Crispy is a white short-day variety for planting September 25 to October 5 in southern New Mexico to mature about June 10, the same time as NuMex Starlite. It is firm, crisp and 'sweet' (low in pungency). Bolting resistance is the same as NuMex Starlite, permitting planting as early as September 25 in Las Cruces. NuMex Crispy has a moderately high level of pink root resistance. Yields on pink root infested land have been acceptable. The color quality of NuMex Crispy is excellent. It displays almost no greening, and the buffing so common on outer scales of many short-day varieties is almost nil. NuMex Crispy shape is typical 'grano' with a somewhat rounded top and tapering to a point at the bottom.