Forma specialis

Usually abbreviated to 'f.sp.' (singular) and 'f.spp.' (=formae speciales, plural) this taxonomic term means 'special form' and is a subdivision of a species of a parasitic fungus that is defined by its host. Thus Fusarium oxysporum has various formae speciales defined by hosts as widely different as banana, flax, tomato, and date palm. A forma specialis can parasitise only its own host genus , and there are usually wide differences in the levels of horizontal resistance within that genus. Foundation stock

The original source of seed from which all other grades of seed are produced. Four-angled bean

See: Psophocarpus tetragonobolus Foxtail millet

See: Setaria italica. Fragaria ananassa

The cultivated strawberry, which is one of the most popular and widely cultivated of the soft fruits. It is an open-pollinated, dioecious, octoploid (2n = 8x = 56) and is a member of the botanical family Rosaceae. Each cultivar is a clones that is propagated vegetatively by runners. The species exhibits very wide variation and there is scope for amateur breeders . The main breeding objectives, other than yield and fruit quality, are horizontal resistance to various pests and diseases. Suitability for mechanical harvesting also has a high priority, and amateur breeders should know something of the machines available. Frankincense

Known as olibanum in its centre of production in eastern Africa, frankincense (Old French = franc encens = pure incense) is an aromatic gum obtained from trees of the genus Bowellia and, when thrown on to glowing charcoal, it produces an aromatic smoke. Little scope for amateur breeders . Free enterprise in plant breeding

For most of the twentieth century, plant breeding was considered an esoteric subject that could be handled only by highly trained geneticists. This was largely because of the many difficulties encountered by pedigree breeding for single-gene, vertical resistance. With the very different approach to breeding for horizontal resistance, using population breeding and recurrent mass selection , plant breeding is so easy that it can be undertaken by amateurs, particularly when they organise themselves into a plant breeding clubs. When there are many such clubs in the world, there will be widespread free enterprise in plant breeding.

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