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Proposed Experiment

Case in point concerning the value of beginner's questions:  my quarterbreds
with signals.  I have an experiment to propose, suitable for even beginning or
aspiring hybridizers.  But first a brief history....

I have often been asked why the rules were changed so that 1/8-breds were no
longer considered arilbreds and have given the usual explanation about not
having enough aril  characteristics.  Some years ago, however, I started digging
into the details of the issue and found a lot of interesting items that provided
food-for-thought for hybridizing experiments.

The most popular aril characteristic of the time was extremely wide form,
typically derived from I. gatesii, but as TBs evolved with wider form, this
became less of a distinguishing characteristic.  When TBs came along with "aril"
traits but no aril ancestry, something had to give.  Unfortunately, it was a
classic case of throwing out the baby with the bath water.

There had been a few 1/8-breds with signals, from different lines of breeding,
but they were rare.  Work with them was apparently abandoned after the rules
change and to make matters worse as those hybridizers dropped out, the 1/4-breds
that were introduced were almost exclusively those from non-signal-producing

WELL -- if the old-timers could put signals on 1/8-breds, I certainly thought I
should be able to do it with 1/4-breds!   And I did.  Some serious pedigree
analysis and a series of experiments finally led to MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION and
it's like.   
I've tried to take the experiment one more step, crossing for 1/8-breds with a
signal patch -- but I haven't have sufficient TB bloom.  There are probably one
or more on this list, though, who grow  MAGNIFICIENT OBSESSION, have a good
selection of TBs, and a yen to experiment.   

I'd like to suggest crossing MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION (or any of my other
signal-bearing quarterbreds) onto pink-ground bicolors.   That's the color
pattern than has given me the highest percentage of signals in my crosses for

Enough for now.  I'll be glad to answer questions about this, on- or off-list,
as you prefer.

Sharon McAllister

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