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Re: Viburnum


Veeerrry Interesting, Kitty.
I am going to print this one out and stick it in the Dirr book in the viburnum section. Certainly the most detailed explanation I have ever come across on pollination.
I purchased 3, 5 gallon size, late last summer and they are still in containers with leaves piled around them. Never got them into the ground due to all the rain. Now to order a decent sized pollinator this spring.
Thank you, Gene
Gene E. Bush
Munchkin Nursery & Gardens, llc
www.munchkinnursery.com
genebush@munchkinnursery.com
Zone 6/5 Southern Indiana

----- Original Message ----- From: <kmrsy@comcast.net>

Gene, I was writing from a 3 or 4 year old memory. In searching for the
correct mate, I came across a very long discussion of it with one
posting of particular value. The postings suggested Viburnum nudum, the
species, Viburnum nudum Earthshades, V. nudum 'Count Pulaski', V.
nudum Pollinator, V cassinoides. and others...but this particular post
(reminiscent of Marge's provenance article) was quite enlightening. Here
is most of what "ViburnumValley" wrote:


Viburnums, as a genus, fruit more prolifically when genetically
dissimilar individuals of the same species are growing close together.
...ones (genetically identical, like 2 Viburnum nudum Winterthur)
planted together do not lend to more prolific fruiting.

With viburnums, fruiting comes from cross-pollination of
self-incompatible plants, which is NOT the same as the reference above
to winterberries (Ilex verticillata). The genus Ilex, holly, typically
has plants that are dioecious (male flowers on one plant, female flowers
on a different plant from whence form fruit). These male and female
plants must still have overlapping bloom times, in order to have fruit
set. Viburnums are monoecious, capable of producing fruit from perfect
flowers on every non-sterile plant (yes, there are some like that, too,
to add to the confusion) as long as a cross-pollinator BLOOMING AT THE
SAME TIME is within insect distance.

The solution has several parts. First, if one procures only seedling
grown plants, one is guaranteed genetic diversity and pollination.
Unfortunately, this is a genus that is primarily produced through
cuttings (vegetative propagation) and these offspring are genetically
identical to the parent plant. These might be named clones like
Winterthur, or they could be identical cuttings from a plant found in
the wild. What to do?

The second route to follow is to plant more than one named clone of
whatever your chosen species happens to be. For the case discussed here,
Viburnum nudum, the general choices are Winterthur; Count Pulaski; Earth
Shade; var. angustifolium; Calloway Large Leaf; Calloway Small leaf; and
any seedling grown from the species. But here comes the kicker.....V.
nudum is native from Connecticut, Long Island to Florida and west
through Kentucky and to Louisiana, all this covering zones 5-9.
Hmmm...guess what happens when you have clones from different ends of
this spectrum? If bloom times don't overlap -- no fruit. Count Pulaski
was selected in Arkansas; Winterthur was selected in Delaware; the
Calloway types are from southern Georgia. As for V. cassinoides as a
cross-pollinator, it is the most closely related species. Some authors
lump Vcass and Vnud together. Vcass is native from Newfoundland to
Manitoba, and Minnesota south to Georgia. I suspect most plants in the
trade hail from the north, so you could expect them to bloom at a much
different time than zone 7 sourced Vnuds.

Mail ordering plants adds to the confusion, since where you bought it
from means nothing to the provenance (where the plant originated). You
could easily buy all the above Vnuds from one grower, and that might be
in Canada, Mexico, Europe, or anywhere in the US. The provenance of the
clones will all still be different.

Kitty
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