Blue Honeysuckle

Denomination: 'Tundra'
Botanical Name: Lonicera caerulea
Applicant/Holder: University of Saskatchewan
Crop Development Centre
4D36 Agriculture Building, 51 Campus Drive
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
S7N 5A8
Breeder: Robert H. Bors, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Application Date: 2007-01-31
Application Number: 07-5729
Grant of Rights Date: 2014-10-17
Certificate Number: 4923
Grant of Rights Termination Date: 2032-10-17

Variety Description

Varieties used for comparison: 'Indigo Gem' and 'Borealis'

Summary: The density of pubescence on the one year old shoot of 'Tundra' is medium whereas it is absent or very sparse on 'Borealis'. The bark on the one year old shoot of 'Tundra' is tinted darker brown whereas it is a bit more red brown on 'Borealis'. There is medium development of adventitious buds on 'Tundra' whereas it is strong on the reference varieties. The leaves of 'Tundra' are longer and wider than those of 'Indigo Gem'. The fruit of 'Tundra' is longer than both reference varieties and wider than 'Indigo Gem'. The fruit of 'Tundra' are exposed within the canopy whereas the fruit of 'Borealis' are hidden in the foliage. 'Tundra' lends itself well to mechanical harvesting as the fruit can be harvested with little or no damage whereas the fruit of 'Borealis' are not readily excised from the plant resulting in more damage to the plants and fruit when harvested mechanically.


PLANT: medium vigour, semi-upright growth habit, medium to strong branching, early time of bud burst
ONE-YEAR OLD SHOOT: no lenticels, medium density of pubescence, dark brown bark, medium development of adventitious buds

LEAF: medium length/width ratio, acute apex, dense pubescence on lower side, medium to dark green on upper side
STEM-CLASPING LEAF: medium to large, pubescent

FLOWER: begins flowering early to mid-season, sparse pubescence of corolla tube, horizontal attitude, style longer than anther length
SEPAL: medium length

FRUIT: begins ripening early, broad elliptic in cross section, broad oblong in lateral view, truncate shape of calyx end, medium size of eye opening, intermediate smoothness of surface, dense tufts of hair at apex
FRUIT SKIN: medium to strong bloom, medium to dark intensity of blue colour

Origin & Breeding History: 'Tundra' arose as the result of the cross, 'Kiev #8' (Blue Velvet) x 'Tomichka' (Blue Belle) conducted in 2001 at the Department of Plant Sciences, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The resulting seedlings from that and other crosses (approximately 850) were field planted in 2002 in the Horticulture Plots of the University. Advanced selection status occurred in 2006. Selection criteria included field hardiness, plant vigour and productivity, fruit size, fruit quality and flavour.

Tests & Trials: The trials for 'Tundra' were conducted at the University of Saskatchewan Horticulture Plots, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan during the summer of 2012. Fifty (50) plants of each variety were planted in 2008 spaced 0.5 metres apart between plants and 3.5 metres between rows. Measured characteristics were based on a minimum of 20 measurements.

Comparison tables for 'Tundra' with reference varieties 'Indigo Gem' and 'Borealis'

Leaf blade length (cm)

  'Tundra' 'Indigo Gem' 'Borealis'
mean 7.2 6.1 7.3
std. deviation 0.55 0.45 0.40

Leaf blade width (cm)

  'Tundra' 'Indigo Gem' 'Borealis'
mean 3.3 3.1 3.3
std. deviation 0.27 0.19 0.40

Fruit length (mm)

  'Tundra' 'Indigo Gem' 'Borealis'
mean 18.0 14.8 15.9
std. deviation 1.58 1.47 1.23

Fruit width (mm)

  'Tundra' 'Indigo Gem' 'Borealis'
mean 11.0 10.2 11.3
std. deviation 1.24 1.11 1.04

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Blue Honeysuckle: 'Tundra'

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Blue Honeysuckle: Reference variety 'Borealis'

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Blue Honeysuckle: 'Tundra' (left) with reference varieties 'Indigo Gem' (centre) and 'Borealis' (right)

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