... growing and hybridizing all kinds of plants in zone 6b Maryland since the 1980's.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

wheat seedlings - "chock full of hope"

It's been very dry since planting but this year's small grains are still doing alright in spite of that.
Below is one of the crosses I'm most excited about. I've started them in containers because all but five of the kernels were shriveled and underdeveloped, which is a good sign that my cross worked, because it's a cross between a hexaploid and a tetraploid. The hybrid kernels (in this kind of cross) usually don't develop fully. The five sprouts in the milk jug on the left were the five normal looking seeds. They'll most likely be accidental selfings. It's really hard for me to catch the wheat florets before any pollen has released and still have them be in good shape for a cross. The others will likely be the intended hybrids of my own club-type, hexaploid bread wheat ("Smooth Awnless Club") and a tetraploid durum type ('Polish'). If they follow the pattern of my previous cross of "Smooth Awnless Club" with 'Black Emmer', they'll be about 50% fertile but very robust once they get past the weak start the shriveled seeds provide. And hopefully, unlike the 'Black Emmer' cross, there shouldn't be SO MANY hulled types among the F2.

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