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HYB: roots, falling stalks


Weather has turned too hot and muggy to safely transplant remaining
seedlings out the the gravel rows, so I've been potting up the remaining
kazillion babies to spend the summer in partial shade.

There are remarkable differences in root systems from one cross to
another.  Root vigor seems to be the key to survival here.  Some
seedlings are all foliage with hardly any root system at all.  Others
are tiny little fans with root system twice the size of the top - very
few of those.

Blooming plants without a big root system, especially at the 'toe' of
the rhizome, are the first to hit the dirt in heavy rain and wind.  A
living grandmother rhizome with live roots pretty much guarantees the
plant won't flop over in rain.

One pot of seedlings has such poor root systems that the little baby
seedlings can't even stand up. They look healthy enough, just falling
all over the place. I should probably throw them all away rather than
waste time growing them on to bloom size, but curiosity will probably
overtake good sense.

Any of the rest of you have thoughts, observations on roots?

I'd especially love to hear of any wide, good substanced, pollen laden
parents that have babies with super root systems.

--
Linda Mann east Tennessee USA zone 7/8
East Tennessee Iris Society <http://www.korrnet.org/etis>
American Iris Society web site <http://www.irises.org>
talk archives: <http://www.hort.net/lists/iris-talk/>
photos archives: <http://www.hort.net/lists/iris-photos/>
online R&I <http://www.irisregister.com>

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