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Re: Free Seed -- adding "vigor" as an important hybridizing goal -- broad spectrum lighting

  • Subject: Re: Free Seed -- adding "vigor" as an important hybridizing goal -- broad spectrum lighting
  • From: "Andrew Lietzow" alietzow@myfamily.com
  • Date: 17 Oct 2003 11:20:07 -0600

Hey there, Bill Nash and Opener's.  

RE>> Maybe we can gather together, our hostaseed collectors living all over our small planet; and then, addict the whole world into hosta-seedling-growing -- OR -- is everyone addicted already?

Whatever happened to the Oklahoma Seed Bank initiative?  I'm drawing a blank right now on her name, but I can remember a kind person and lots of effort on your parts to get that going.  I both purchased and donated seed there (the OHSB?) and it seemed like such a wonderful idea.  Her name will return as soon as I click send, I suppose.  

A couple years back, I purchased some seed from a Hostalibrary.org special auction, to which Ran Lydell had contributed some planned-crossed seed.  I have several of those plants growing in the garden/harem now and have a few under evaluation.   The Neat Splash sdlg was superb, the CONS XXXX interesting, etc.   Maybe another seed auction is upcoming?    

This was my first major year to perform planned crosses.  I don't think I could have done it without my kit from EarthStar, Inc.  It's marketed as a Daylily kit, but works just as well for Hosta.   Anyone familiar with it, or have another that they like?   I'd make them up and offer them myself yet how could I compete with his $50 price tag?  It's a bargain and he may have a monopoly as it's quite a bargain.      

My next step is to FINALLY set up a more permanent place to grow seedlings, and to get the Metal Halide and/or Sodium lights going.  I also use flourescents but I'm anxious to see what the results will be from using a Metal Halide light, both as a supplemental to our furnace ( :-) ) and for the broad spectrum lighting.  I finally have space for a small tissue culture lab, a small seed propagation facility and in a few years, maybe I'll have the time to enjoy it.  Producing something worthwhile? well that tends to be a goal for many of the addicted, doesn't it?   :-)   

I would reinterate Mary Chastain's comment that vigor is a laudible goal.  There are some, however, though they lack vigor or are even dreadflully ugly by mid-August, are so entirely lovely in spring that one would hate to live life without them.   H. 'Sea Fire' , H. 'Lakeside Gold Point', to quickly name a couple.  

Mary may be interested to know that H. 'Lakeside Gold Point' earns its keep as a sentry toward the entrance to my garden because in the spring and summer it is simply stunning.  However, it suffers in the later periods, being not too fond of heat and draught.  It seems as though adding vigor to its progeny, perhaps by hybridizing with a later bloomer, might somehow spoil its early, springtime appearance?   Vigor appears to be so closely tied to bloom cycle.  

Maybe Mary or Bill or others would comment on these two or three questions?  

Andrew L. 

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