Christopher S Cramer

Image of Chris S. Cramer

Research area: Breeding, Genetics, Onions, Quantitative Genetics, Crop Production


  • Ph.D. in Horticultural Science. Minor in Genetics and Statistics. Department of Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh. May 1997. Dissertation: "Specific combining ability for fruit yield and shape, yield, and yield components of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) populations improved using recurrent selection.

  • M.S. in Horticulture. Department of Plant Science, University of Connecticut, Storrs. May 1994. Master's Thesis: "In vitro and in vivo studies of Mussaenda.

  • B.S. in Horticulture. Department of Horticulture, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park. Graduated with honors and distinction. May 1991. University Scholar's Program. Undergraduate Thesis. "Hybridization between diploid and tetraploid Pelargonium xhortorum Bailey."

Research Interests:

Our breeding program develops onion cultivars for growers in New Mexico. Very few commercial onion cultivars are adapted to the growing conditions found in New Mexico. In addition, the onion acreage in New Mexico is too small to warrant specific cultivar development by commercial seed companies. Our program develops high yielding, high quality, disease resistant, and bolting resistant cultivars that allow growers in New Mexico to be competitive with other onion markets in the United States.

Professional Experience:

  • Professor of Horticulture.7/08-Present. Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, New Mexico State University.

  • Associate Professor of Horticulture. 7/03-7/08. Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, New Mexico State University.

  • Assistant Professor of Horticulture: 9/97-7/03. Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, New Mexico State University.

Courses Taught:

AGRO/HORT 100G (Introductory Plant Science) is an introductory course that exposes freshmen and sophomore students in agriculture related majors to the many disciplines of plant science. Students learn plant systematics, plant anatomy, soil science, plant physiology, plant propagation, plant breeding and genetics, landscape design, crop production, crop physiology, and pest management. Students take field trips to research facilities, library, growers' fields, commercial nurseries, and grocery stores. In the laboratory, students gain practical experience in crop production, transplanting, pruning, dissection, identification, plant propagation, and plant breeding. Students write an essay based upon current issues involving plant science and present their essay before the class. 4 credits hours with a lab.

AGRO/HORT 670 (Biometrical Genetics and Plant Breeding) is an upper level graduate course that examines quantitative genetics and how it can be used in a plant breeding program. Topics covered in the course included single gene inheritance, gene frequency, inbreeding, identity of alleles by descent, covariance of traits, covariance between individuals, epistasis, mating designs, gain from selection, heritability, heterosis and inbreeding depression, genotype by environment interaction, path analysis, and quantitative trait loci. 3 credit hours.

HORT 205 (Introduction to Horticulture) is an introductory course open to all majors in the university. Students learn plant anatomy, soil science, plant physiology, plant propagation, plant breeding and genetics, plant systematics, crop production, crop physiology, greenhouse and nursery management, and pest management. The course offers students flexibility in completing a course without having to come to campus on certain days or at certain times. First entirely web-based, distance education course offered by the department. 3 credit hours.