On 8 October, personnel at the Agua Fría research station received Professor Miguel Ángel González and a group of 35 students studying Plant Breeding at Veracruz University, at Tuxpan campus. Station Superintendent Raymundo López, gave an introductory presentation about CIMMYT’s research and the center’s work on maize in Africa and the work being done in Agua Fría to improve this tropical crop.
López, along with Juan Espinoza and Alfredo Bonilla, field assistant and field helper, respectively, from Genetic Resources spoke to students about types of soils, land preparation, application of agrochemicals, and various aspects of breeding for normal and quality protein maize (QPM).
Research assistants, Mayolo Leyva and Manuel López talked to students about the laborious task of selecting lines. The visitors went on a tour of the field plots and saw how single, double, and triple cross hybrids of QPM and normal maize are formed, as well as synthetic materials with tolerance to drought and low nitrogen, and resistance to diseases and insects, among other factors.
Some students showed a lot of interest in the breeding activities and said they had a positive and useful learning experience in terms of their studies. The director of the Agronomy faculty will send a new request for students to observe field work done at the station as the knowledge and practical experience they gain is very beneficial for their professional agricultural careers.