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

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Some yellow roses

First picture shows a late bloom from Rosa xanthina held up beside an opening flower on 'Hazeldean'. They're pretty close in saturation of color.

The second picture shows that same Rosa xanthina flower held up beside and opening flower on the Rosa rugosa X 'Hazeldean' hybrid. Rosa xanthina looks a little lighter in this picture but I think it was because the picture was taken in the shade of the house.

Strawberry Seedlings

I've been lazy in leaving these inside the salad container with the lid still on. But they seem to be doing just fine, and this way I don't have to remember to water them, ever. I guess I'll soon have to "harden them off" and eventually get them planted outside.

"MR1" - Rosa carolina derivative

"MR1" is blooming now. It's parentage is ('Fragrant Cloud' x Rosa carolina) X 'Carefree Sunshine'. It's surprising to me how much it looks like a typical modern shrub rose since it's only 2 crosses away from a wild species, Rosa carolina. Unfortunately it retained the once-blooming habit of that species.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Rosa rugosa x pimpinellifolia 'Double White'

Here's are two seedlings from Rosa rugosa X Rosa pimpinellifolia 'Double White'. Neither got any doubling, but 'Double White' does seem to give darker pinks than the single form of R. pimpinellifolia I'd used in the past.


I made bluebird houses about 15 or 20 years ago and put them out here. I'd followed plans that included snake and racoon excluding baffles on the poles. In spite of all that preparation, there were some tragic happenings - like house sparrows pecking bluebirds to death on their nests. So, I'd just about given up on them. Most of them have fallen into disrepair, but this one is still whole and had a deer mouse nesting in it a few months back when I peeked in. That's what I was expecting to find, when I peeked in yesterday, but instead there was a nest and five small blue eggs. I didn't see any parent birds anywhere around, and can't remember offhand... could these actually be bluebird eggs???
Funny thing is that whatever bird it is, they've lined the nest with hairs from the deer carcass that was over in the other bamboo clump (Phyllostachys angusta I think).

Bamboo shoots

Went out stomping bamboo shoots yesterday (to get the strays that the mower couldn't get to) and then it occurred to me... hey I'd originally purchased this Phyllostachys nuda because it was noted as having good sprouts for eating. So we gathered up and peeled some of the stomped shoots. I think you're really supposed to get them when they're just breaking the surface, and these were pretty tall already, but they ended up being pretty good anyway. I remembered that they're not good raw, so I decided to parboil them and then stir fry in butter with salt and lemon juice. Was pretty tasty!

But did learn something else... if you're going to parboil them, it's a really good idea to at least split them in half first. Duh... I found out that the hard way. Those closed segments start exploding as they heat up, spraying boiling water all around the stove. After 5 or 6 good pops, I quickly retrieved the rest and split them beforing finishing the boil.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Rosa rugosa X 'Hazeldean'

I held a bloom of 'Hazeldean' up against some of the flowers of the hybrid seedling (Rosa rugosa X 'Hazeldean') so that you can see how much of the color saturation was lost.
I'm gonna try to get a picture of these two, and Rosa xanthina, and its hybrid with rugosa, all in one picture. That would be neat to see. Cross my fingers they'll all be in bloom simultaneously.

Species cross irises

Here's a clump style picture of three seedlings of Iris cengialtii LOPPIO x Iris reginae. I'm using the blue-ish one on the left as pod parent and putting pollen on it from a seedling I call "ruffled sib to aqua".
Below is a picture showing the traces of "turquoise" that I'm hoping to intensify and exapnd on. I removed the standards so you can see how the style arms of "ruffled sib to aqua" (left) compare to one of the bluest typical type irises (on right).

One of last year's interploid iris seedlings

'Pink Champagne' X 'Astra Girl' is blooming again and has been increasing well. So far, I'm happily surprised at how well the newer tetraploid Tall Beardeds combine with diploid MTB's. The width and overall form aren't quite like the new Tall Beardeds, but it sure isn't as "old-fashioned" as some of those original historic tetraploid Tall Beardeds.

Newest Interploid Iris

Maiden bloom this year on the single seedling I got by using pollen of my reblooming diploid Miniature Tall Bearded, 'Easy Smile', on Lowell Baumunk's tetraploid Tall Bearded, 'Introspection'.
Fairly ordinary looking but should be carrying genes from my diploid reblooming lines into the tetraploid gene pool - which could be a lot of fun.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

2013 species rose cross seedlings

Picture 1 - open-pollinated seedlings from "3/4 native", which is ('Fragrant Cloud' x Rosa carolina) X Rosa virginiana. Lots of variability already, but all seem healthy so far (not surprising considering all the wild ancestry).
 Picture 2 - davidii X fedtschenkoana

Picture 3 -  glutinosa X fedtschenkoana

Picture 4 - palustris X fedtschenkoana

Picture 5 - open pollinated seedlings from F1 glutinosa X palustris

Picture 6 - open-pollinated seedlings from my bracteata hybrids, which are bracteata X (rugosa x palustris) 

'Superba' Lilac

I know I've posted before about this lilac's Fall rebloom, but it still really nice even in the Spring. It's daintier that the regular lilacs and is a prettty pinkish color - I didn't capture it very well in the picture. I can't ever remember the name... something like Syringa microphylla pubescens 'Superba'... but whatever its name, it's one of my favorite shrubs.

Geum 'Flames of Passion'

Wedged between the pansies and a feathery mass of yarrow foliage is a cute little Geum 'Flames of Passion'. I'd planted one of these three years ago and it didn't survive a year, but I'm really glad I decided to give it another try. This ones really happy and I like it as much as I thought I would!

Colorful Spring scene and pansy parents

I thought I needed a picture of the sun setting on these Spring flowers.
Part of that scene are these two pansies that I decided would be the pollen parents for my Viola arvensis crosses. Pods are forming, so look for F1 pictures next Spring. If they're anything like they've been in the past, the F1 will be the size of Johnny Jump Ups (Viola tricolor) and the color should be plain yellow (for the F1 from the orange), and pale purple (for the F1 from the red).

Rosa primula and Rosa xanthina

Two early blooming yellow species roses, Rosa primula and Rosa xanthina, are back in bloom after a few years recovering from being moved. The first picture is mostly Rosa primula (there's one branch of Rosa xanthina sneaking into the picture).  The second picture shows the two side by side for comparison - the darker yellow is Rosa xanthina. The third picture shows some blooms on white paper, as I was getting them ready to collect and store pollen for later in the season when other species bloom.