Producers and marketers from Murcia, Castilla-La Mancha, Almeria, Lower Ebro or Valencia visited Los Alcázares (Murcia) to find out about Syngenta’s overall offer for the melon and watermelon segment, both in new varieties on a commercial level and in solutions for treatments and biological control for these crops.
In the melon sector, Syngenta’s improvement is seeking out the quality of the fruit throughout the entire process, ensuring a good post-harvest and maximum resistance level to different diseases, amongst which oidium resistance stands out. On this point, José Morellá, Melon Portfolio Manager, emphasised the high quality of the varieties that are emerging in Murcia, such as Jimenado, Almeza and Pinzón or the new oidium resistant varieties, such as the MP-3300, or the ones to be grown in Castilla-La Mancha, such as Velasco or Mendoza.
Jimenado must be underlined as an early variety of protected crops, with a rustic, strong plant that sets easily, bearing fruit with high commercial yield, great organoleptic quality and with a high resistance to Fusarion and medium resistance to oidium. There are also new products such as MP-3300, Velasco and Mendoza that are highly resistant to oidium. They are also highly resistant to fusarium, to melon screening (MNSV) and they have an excellent post-harvest behaviour. Velasco, which is an open air variety in early cycles that is working very well in Castilla-La Mancha, is also having excellent results in the Murcia region, with high productions and exceptional quality. These varieties, along with Almeza, Pinzón, Hilario, Sancho or Ibérico, make up a leading offer in the melon segment.
In the watermelon segment, Francisco Morales, Watermelon Portfolio Manager commented on how the improvements are being aimed at an earlier watermelon that is well adapted agronomically, as well as the development of “Icebox” type watermelons, weighing between 2.5 and 4 kg, which offer high quality and profitability for the farmer. In the fields, the quality and the high production of the TRIX Paula watermelon could be seen (up to 100,000 kg/ha in this area), planted in frames with 1.5 metres between plants and 2 metres between lines, with a very strong plant, many fruits per plant, which sets very well and gives a watermelon with sweet flesh, high quality and very few, small, white, edible seeds, which improves post-harvest storage. This type of watermelon is very successful on the German and Northern Europe market, where the black watermelon does not sell well.