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Re: Tetraploids in Hosta {seedpod-size?}


>Re: Hosta ventricosa; as a selected example plant - -- it is written 
>almost everywhere -- that this plant says "I'M A TETRAPLOID", so I'm 

When I look at the foliage of ventricosa I don't see anything that 
stands out as saying it is tetraploid.  The only thing I see as a 
possible indication of tetraploidy is the large pod size.  I generally 
don't pay much attention to hoasta flowers as there isn't a lot of 
difference between the flowers in different hostas as compared to 
other genera.  I suspect that tetraploid hostas might have somewhat 
larger flowers, but pod size is probably the only visual trait that 
may be of any significance.  

>It is also stated:  Ventricosa is the only pure-breeding hosta i.e. 
>all seedling offspring are identical to the Mother (pod-parent) and 
>this, because it produces seed without actual fertilization (via 
>pseudogamous apomixis).

I'm beginning to doubt this.  I have one seedling that is sieboldiana 
x ventricosa that was a natural hybrid that I grew from OP sieboldiana 
seed from a garden that only contained sieboldiana and ventricosa and 
it looks like ventricosa.  Hope to see it bloom this year.

In the fall of 1999 I planted a LOT of OP ventricosa aureomarginata 
seed that I collected from Walden West and the germination was 
extremely poor.  Also, all the seedlings as far as I could tell looked 
like hybrids.  I saved all the vigorous ones and I should have decent 
sized plants by the end of this summer.  I'll try to get images of 
them and post them on my web site.  Now, ventricosa aureomarginata may 
behave differently then ventricosa.

Joe Halinar

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