Genetic analysis in haploids provides unconventional yet powerful advantages not available in diploid organisms. In Arabidopsis thaliana, haploids can be generated through seeds by crossing a wild-type strain to a transgenic strain with altered centromeres. Here we report the development of an improved haploid inducer (HI) strain, SeedGFP-HI, that aids selection of haploid seeds prior to germination. We also show that haploids can be used as a tool to accelerate a variety of genetic analyses, specifically pyramiding multiple mutant combinations, forward mutagenesis screens, scaling down a tetraploid to lower ploidy levels and swapping of nuclear and cytoplasmic genomes. Furthermore, the A. thaliana HI can be used to produce haploids from a related species A. suecica and generate homozygous mutant plants from strong maternal gametophyte lethal alleles, which is not possible via conventional diploid genetics. Taken together, our results demonstrate the utility and power of haploid genetics in A. thaliana. & copy; 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.