Harold and I would like to welcome you to our seedling patch. We
have a very small and very eclectic breeding program. WE have a
total of about 5000 seedlings. We are currently unfocused and tend
to dabble pollen with little rhyme or reason. As we are "hybridizing"
just for fun and not for fame or fortune, we do have the luxury
of following our whims without worrying if they will produce a cash
crop. Our hybridizing goal is to try to become a bit more focused
in the upcoming seasons, but to still feel free to do some off the
wall crosses. I'm not sure that we will ever have an introduction,
but we are going to have a lot of fun and learn some of what it
takes to produce new flowers. As for what we are breeding for, we
do both dips and tets. We do full forms, spiders, unusual forms,
and doubles. We like vibrant saturated colors and pastels. Ruffles,
teeth, eyes, watermarks, bands, and edges are all lovely too. I
don't think I left anything out
The summer of 2005 we will see some of our 1st year, several of
our 2nd year and most of our 3rd year seedlings in bloom. This summer
we are going to try our hand at "seedling selection".
The ones that we saw bloom last year were lots of fun, and a very
few were even pretty nice! Of course we kept them all
year, we feel we should see them at their best and must begin to
weed out the ugliest ones. As we do have plenty as space, we don't
have to be as rigid in our purging as many are.
Last summer, which was when we saw our first significant amount
of seedling bloom, we didn't manage to take very many photos of
quality. Either they were not opened or they were gone by when we
had a moment to try to capture their images with the digital camera.
This summer we hope to improve upon our images for the seedling
gallery, and at least try to get shots of the nicer ones.
One thing that we have learned from this experiment in hybridizing
is that it takes a great deal of time. I seriously doubt that we
will have the time to do a good job of it until we retire and have
fewer commitments on our time. It was at times overwhelming the
amount or paperwork and record keeping needed to accurately keep
track of the various crosses. There were many opportunities along
the way where even with your best intentions that valuable information
could be lost. Lost tags, ink that faded, dropped seedpods, illegible
writing, are jus some of the problems that you face in the first
phase of seed production. Then there are seedlings that start out
marked but become unidentifiable (our cats liked to pull out the
seedlings and drop them in a pile on the floor). Once in the garden
you have Mother Nature and can be plagued by critters and children
who play or remove the tags. Even with our best attempts, we still
ended up with many "unknowns" in our seedling patch.
Leila & Harold