RE: HYB: JI X SIB hybrids
From: "J.F. Hensler" <email@example.com>
From: Bill Shear <BILLS@hsc.edu>
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.<<<
Okay, here's what we have so far. From the top....
By comparing plants whose genetic makeup is more or less balanced and which
are sterile or nearly so, you may be comparing apples to oranges.
If such a cross has happened before and the genetic makeup is UNbalanced in
favor of one parent or the other it's unlikely to be noticed unless someone
was watching for specific traits. Especially if the cv is a volunteer.
Common procedure has been not to test plants which look predominantly like
one species but to register them as what they resemble..
>>>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.)<<<
Opened the blooms myself on all plants involved and broke the falls off the
JIs. Saved ONLY the seeds from the JIs. At the suggestion that my crosses
might be the result of bees or thrips (!), I've since adopted a method of
stripping a bud of all but the stylearms without waiting until it's ready
Since I have it posted to show to a couple of friends, y'all are welcome to
check out the method. If you can improve further, I'd be interested in
suggestions. URL is http://www.povn.com/rock/stripshow.html. :)
>>>2) The seedlings look like EITHER sibericas OR ensatas; none that I have
seen pictures of show combined traits or look intermediate between the
If you mean by "combined", the bloom only... Not yet. A blended type wasn't
a priority initially. If you mean combined traits showing in the entire
plant, and behavior is included as well, then there are 2 Sib types whose
leaves (once the plants are clump size) do a convincing imitation of
Ensatas. Width of leaves and prominence of leaf ridges in Ensatas is so
variable, I've been relying on behavior more than appearance as an
indication that a plant may warrant a closer look.
The cross was tried because the JIs couldn't handle our poor soil and lack
of water and I've focused more on the JI type seedlings. At present, 9
plants which escaped being gopher food in the lower garden over the winter
are now a year old. They were germinated in and then replanted inside the
"X" zone. This area is used primarily for testing of xeriscape plants. Soil
is highly sandy, very poor, and in full sun. Ph has tested at 5.6.
Since tiny scabiosa lucida were being started along with the iris
seedlings, this area received about 1/2" of water every 2 weeks last summer
when it got hot. Day temps during the warmest part ranged between mid 80s
and high 90s with no rain for about 2 months.
This year, the area has received no additional water. Rain has been below
normal but temps have been cooler than normal. Depth of any noticeable
moisture is now 4" below the soil surface. The upper 4" resembles coarse
powder. Soil surface at midday, when temps are at least 85, feels hot to
5 of these plants look remarkably healthy and happy (so far). Of these, 3
are exceptionally nice. At present, they look as good or better than their
Sib type counterparts grown under slightly better conditions.
Oh, for the record.... the original notes refer to both JIs setting pods.
>>>3) There have been no chromosome counts or RFLP examinations of the
seedlings to show the presence of genetic material from two different
Of the 4 plants to have chromosome counts done, one (a JI type) showed 24
Cs. The other 3 (1 JI type and 2 Sib types) showed 26 Cs. (I offer my
apologies to everyone I bugged the heck out of when trying to learn to read
C spreads and am eternally grateful for the patience you showed!)
The JI type that "flunked" spent two years blooming her little head off in
one of the xeriscape display beds. She was moved when she started crowding
the daylily. :)
In 1899 Charles H. Duell recommended closing the Office of Patents because
"Everything that can be invented has been invented".
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