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Re: Message from Andrew to Andrea

  • Subject: Re: Message from Andrew to Andrea
  • From: "Andrew Lietzow" <andrewl@hostahaven.com>
  • Date: Mon, 18 Jun 2001 22:27:37 -0500

Dear Andrea,
RE:>>I quite couldn't believe how I got into hot water that quick, lol.

It's interesting how many people can see themselves as getting into "hot
water" so quickly with me.  You're not in "hot water".  I'm simply
attempting to advance the discussion into the field of genetics so I can
learn a little something.

I'm analytical about these matters and so I was simply sharing that many of
the genetics that cause a streaky plant to be streaky are in a state of
flux.  The same genetic events that caused streaking can just as easily
cause a reversion, or for the plant to become useful in a breeding program.
I am rather amazed that this phenomena is not well understood from a
molecular biological point of view, but then Hostas are ornamentals and not
food crops.  Many researchers have been working on causation for chimeral
rearrangement since the turn of the century but with much smaller budgets.
We simply need more researchers with bigger budgets but this is not too
likely to occur.

Without getting into great detail, the primary thing I was pointing out is
that I have several plants here that are simply Hosta species plants.  I
know some collectors who specialize in acquiring species plants in order to
better understand the morphological strengths and weaknesses that can be
brought into a gene pool as they perform crosses.  Even these simple plants
(Hosta "weeds", if you will) garner a lot of respect from me because of the
strengths they can contribute to progeny.

I have a William Lachman streaked plant that appears to be true to type and
I have another William Lachman streaked plant that is a seedling, not true
to type.  As it turns out, the seedling offers some very unique
characteristics that are quite appealing. Rather than pitching it, the plant
has been give a "reprieve" to allow for further evaulation. One trait it
offers is it's whirlwind petiole structure, similar to that of Quilting Bee.
It also produces a scape that is similar to that of Erie Magic. (see
http://hostagenetics.com/ERIMAG_200.jpg for a picture).  These are two
rather uncommon characteristics.  While not true to type for streaking, it
does possess at least a goodly portion of the plastid DNA of the pod parent
(William Lachman) and some of the nuclear DNA of both parents, contributing
to morphology beyond coloration.  Were this F1 plant to be crossed again
with a "true to type" streaky William Lachman, some interesting plants could
result. Or, if crossed with various other streaky plants, control for these
characteristics could be lost or increased.   Now that I think about it, I
wonder what a cross with Erie Magic would yield?  Any one have an Erie Magic
that is mature enough to produce a flower that will sell or trade?

As I ponder these phenomena and taxonomic details, I gain more respect for
God's creation and/or 4,000,000,000 years of evolution all tied back to the
original infusion of life into some DNA strands that somehow have managed to
not perish.  I seldom see much that looks like "junk".  Perhaps this
triggered my reply because I'm sentitive to that term being used to describe
living things.  Even one of the most basic Hostas in my collection, H.
ventricosa, adds a lot to my garden so maybe this is why I was speaking out
in defense of your problem plant.  I enjoy some of my plain greens and plain
golds about as much as the variegated and streaky plants that seem to garner
much more attention.

Oh well, 'nough said'.  Don't mind me.  I'm just befuddled by codons and
promoters.  Now and then I try to get into the mainstream but fail miserably
in the attempt.  Party on... I'll go crawl back under my Hosta leaf...

Andrew Lietzow
#1 Plantsman at http://HostaHaven.com
1250 41st Street
Des Moines, IA 50311-2516

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