Lassen Canyon Nursery Breeding Program
The breeding program at Lassen Canyon Nursery started in 2000 and is headed by the one and only Jim Bagdasarian. He has been a part of our company for 15 years. Nick Pinkerton along with Travis Stegmeir, PhD have recently become a part of Jim’s program in the last couple years. It takes years and dedication to breed the right strawberry plant that produces the qualities the industry is looking for. Jim has been breeding strawberries since 1989.
The varieties that Lassen Canyon Nursery’s Breeding program has produced are Sweet Ann, Stella, Scarlet, Ruby June, and Lucia. Sweet Ann and Stella are two varieties we patented in the last 5 years. Sweet Ann has become very popular in California among the growers in the Watsonville and Salinas areas. This year will be the first year of sales of Scarlet, Ruby June and Lucia, they are still being introduced to the market.
When breeding strawberry plants you look for many different qualities and traits that the variety needs to possess that will be marketable. Those traits are disease resistance, low runner production, berry size (large or small depending on fresh or processed market), firmness of the fruit, color, appearance, and shape. All of these are what growers in the fruiting industry look for depending on what market they produce fruit for.