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Re: HYB: JI X SIB hybrids

From: Bill Shear <BILLS@hsc.edu>

>From: Bill Shear <BILLS@hsc.edu>
>>From: Dennis Kramb <dkramb@badbear.com>
>>>From: Bill Shear <BILLS@hsc.edu>
>>>SO--this still doesn't prove that these seedlings are really JI x SIB
>>Why would you think they aren't?
>This is all in the archives, but--
>1) This is a cross that has been tried many times without success, between
>two iris species that are not very closely related to each other.  It seems
>very unlikely that suddenly such a cross should produce abundant seed and
>that the progeny should themselves be very fertile.
>2) Both species are very self-fertile and form volunteer pods with ease.
>We don't know if Christy took any precautions to avoid self-fertilization
>(emasculating seed parents, removing falls, tying up flowers, etc.)
>2) The seedlings look like EITHER sibericas OR ensatas; none that I have
>seen pictures of show combined traits or look intermediate between the
>3) There have been no chromosome counts or RFLP examinations of the
>seedlings to show the presence of genetic material from two different
>So, I remain skeptical.  It COULD be, but I don't think it very likely.  I
>hope that before these plants become widely distributed or introduced to
>commerce as hybrids, some form of convincing evidence for their ancestry
>can be produced.

One thing those of you growing these seedlings could try would be to make
many crosses between the siberica-like and ensata-like seedlings, with the
appropriate precautions against self-fertilization.  If you get some seed,
that would be positive evidence.  If this seed produced either
intermediates or both types from the same pod, that would be even more
convincing.  If the seed produced only the type of the pod parent, you
would be back to square one.

Unless such crosses are made under strict conditions, and each seed kept
track of individually, I will remain a non-believer!

Bill Shear
Department of Biology
Hampden-Sydney College
Hampden-Sydney VA 23943
FAX (804)223-6374

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