“GEORGIA-16HO” is a new high-yielding, high-oleic, TSWV*-resistant, large-seeded, runner-type peanut variety that was released by the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Station in 2016.  It was developed by Dr. William D. Branch at the University of Georgia, Coastal Plain Experiment Station, Tifton, GA. During three-years and two-years averaged over multiple location tests in Georgia, Georgia-16HO had the lowest percent TSWV* and total disease incidence and highest pod yield, TSMK*** grade, and dollar value return per acre compared to the high-oleic, runner-type varieties, Florida-07, FloRun ‘107’, TUFRunner ‘297’, TUFRunner ‘511’, and TUFRunner ‘727’. Georgia-16HO was also found to have a large runner seed size similar to three of these large-seeded, high-oleic, runner-type varieties, Florida-07, TUFRunner ‘727’, and TUFRunner ‘511’. Georgia-16HO combines high dollar value and TSWV*-resistance with the high-oleic trait for longer shelf-life and improved oil quality of peanut and peanut products.


Dr. William D. Branch

Dr. William D. Branch is an award-winning plant breeder who oversees the peanut breeding program at the University of Georgia’s Tifton campus. He has long been actively involved in the development of improved varieties of peanuts. These desirable traits include increasing yield, grade, better shelling characteristics and shelf-life; enhancing flavor and nutritional qualities; and improving resistance to disease, insects, viruses, nematodes, aflatoxin and drought.

Since joining UGA in 1978 as an Assistant Geneticist, Dr. Branch has received numerous awards for his work, including the Dow AgroScience Award for Excellence in Research (2005), the American Peanut Council’s Peanut Research and Education Award (2003) and the Georgia Crop Improvement Association Distinguished Service Award (2003).

Dr. Branch holds a 100 percent research appointment in peanut breeding. It normally takes about 10 years to develop a new cultivar, and he has released 19 new peanut cultivars from 1986 through 2012 (including one a year from 1999 through 2012). He holds seven plant patents and has been involved in the publication of numerous plant breeding and crop science papers.

Dr. Branch has served as Chairman, Peanut Crop Registration Committee for Crop Science Society of America; Coordinator, National Uniform Peanut Performance Tests involving all major peanut states; and as a member of the Peanut Crop Germplasm Committee of the USDA National Plant Germplasm System. He also served on the Georgia Crop Improvement Association Advisory Committee and the Peanut Commodity Committee and the Plant Cultivar and Germplasm Release committees of the UGA College of College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.

His professional affiliations include the American Society of Agronomy, the Crop Science Society of America, the American Peanut Research and Education Society, the American Genetic Association, the Council of Agricultural Science and Technology, the American Peanut Council, and Sigma Xi.

He received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees from Oklahoma State University at Stillwater, OK.


  • Department of Crop & Soil Sciences
  • University of Georgia, Tifton Campus