10. Commercial Hybrid Cucumbers

In the 1950s, Weizmann Institute Professor Esra Galun focused his research on hybrid seed production in cucumbers and melons. The professor was intent on breeding disease-resistant vegetables suitable for mechanical harvesting. Galun and his research partners found a method of producing hybrid cucumber seeds that did not require hand pollination.

Galun’s project resulted in the production of the first commercial hybrid cucumbers. The vegetables quickly cornered the market, and most cucumber varieties cultivated today are derived from the Weizmann technique. Galun went on to develop early-blooming melons and disease-resistant potatoes.