Term in plant breeding for the differentiation of breeding lines.
Variety is a general term for a distinct population within a species with distinguishing, heritable traits. Plant breeders use the term variety for cultivated plants if they possess noteworthy traits and have been recognised by an approval process.
A commercialised variety must have stable, distinct, and uniform traits so that farmers can be confident of the seed they are purchasing. In many countries, a systematic evaluation processes is prerequisite to marketing a new variety.
Cultivar is a more precise term meaning cultivated variety. While varieties may exist in nature, cultivars do not.