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CULT: Bloom Report

Barbara Mann wrote:

>  Well, that's how WAR DRUMS looked when it opened, but I'm finding that=
>  many of Sharon's kids, it faded fast.  Actually, it may be that those
>  the really intense color just can't hold it for as long as a day.  Or
>  it's just the weather.  But that one now has deep rose falls and light=
>  standards, veined deeper.  Others that fade markedly include WHIRLING
>  THUNDER, THINGS TO COME, and RHINESTONE COWGIRL, which opened with fal=
>  overlaid red and a pretty gold beard and is now a smooth soft pink.  N=
>  bad, but what a change!

Actually, this is typical of layered-pigment
arilbreds.  I'm not the only one working =

with them, but I've introduced quite a few.

is a striking example -- a large clump with
flowers ranging from just-opening through
several-days-old presents a diverse bouquet.  =

His LILLIAN A. WHITE opens with lavender-
blue standards and greenish-buff falls, =

but quickly becomes a white self that shows
off its bright orange beard & demure burgundy

A flower is a process, not an event.  Is anyone
else here old enough to recall the stop-
motion photography of Disney's "Fantasia"?
I'd love to see that done with arilbreds.

The Case of the Fading Arilbreds involves
two separate factors.....

First, arils and arilbreds do not open full-size,
but rather the bud opens and the flower =

expands for at least a day.  This is marked
at first, then gradually slows, making it hard to
say exactly when the flower reaches its full
size, but the result is a thinning of pigmentation
so that the color becomes less saturated.  For
a simple pigmentation pattern, the color =

appears lighter but otherwise unchanged.  =

For a solid self, bitone, or bicolor, this serves =

to enhance any signal that may be present.

Black-budded reds are a striking example.  When
color first starts to show, the bud appears
almost jet-black, with just a hint of red. =

By the time it starts fluffing out, it's reddish-black.  =

Fully open, the flower is only a reddish-brown or =

reddish-violet.  Even in deep shade.

Second, many of the more exotic color =

combinations are created by layers of pigment.
As a layer burns off, the color itself appears
to change.  GLAMOUR PUSS opens a golden =

yellow, blushed burgundy, with a burgundy
beard.  How long the blush lasts depends on =

the weather and sun exposure, but by the
time the flower closes it's a yellow self with
a strongly contrasting burgundy beard.  If you
like the blush, you lament it's passing -- but
if you prefer the clear contrast the change
seems to just be part of the maturing process.

Assuming someone's going to ask how to
know whether an arilbred is a layered-pigment
type, there are a few key words that often =

appear in descriptions.

SMOKY.  This is usually the result of a
grey overlay that will disappear as the
flower ages to reveal the underlying =

pattern. =

BLUSH.  An anthocyanidin overlay, ranging =

from pinkish lavender through blue-violet
and red-violet to rust.  Blushes are, by
definition, transient.

BLEND.  Sometimes the effect of layering,
sometimes a changing mix of pixels.  To
complicate matters -- sometimes both.

It's not infallible -- but if you see one of these
terms in the description of an arilbred, =

there's a good chance the flower will change
noticeably as it ages.

Sharon McAllister
Southern New Mexico

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