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H. 'Thumb Nail' or 'Suzuki Thumbnail'

  • Subject: H. 'Thumb Nail' or 'Suzuki Thumbnail'
  • From: "Andrew Lietzow" <alietzow@myfamily.com>
  • Date: Sat, 31 Jul 2004 12:39:30 -0500

Hi Pat, 

RE:>>Per H. 'Thumb Nail' (registered 1982: Aden and H. 'Suzuki Thumbnail'
registered 1987: Kichigoro Suzuki/Ruh.  Both list parentage as H venusta.

Yes, I was aware of this from your database, and the good descriptions George's book.  Thanks for making sure I've done my homework about 'Suzuki Thumbnail' (ST) prior to posting my question.  :-)  

What I'm curious about is the vigor of this little plant (have you ever observed how deep into the soil this plant will send roots?  I think it's at least a foot!) and the glossy surface of its leaves.  Though venusta and most forms hold up fairly well to slugs, ST is vastly superior.   I want to determine ploidy just because it is so unique compared to other venusta forms and I imagine its DNA weight will be different, i.e. indeed hybrid, but who knows?   From there, I might be able to determine pollen parent candidates.  

If indeed hybrid, which would have been it's pollen parent?   Shining Tot?   And, if Shining Tot, then did ST get it's shiny leaves from Rock Master?  If from Rock Master, then from which for RM?   P. Aden lists no pollen parent for Rock Master.  Rock Master is not shown at the Hosta Library,  so no PDF file from Lemke's list; I'm at a dead end for determing from whence cometh this shiny leaf.    

Schmid only lists 'Rock Master' as a venusta Hybrid, so I imagine Paul was keeping this a secret.  Of the four + venusta forms Ben has tested, the group does not include Suzuki Thumbnail.  So, I'm wondering if the pollen parent might not be Okamotoi or Ruprifraga, both of which have shiny leaves.  This trait should be dominant, since they are species plants.  See where I'm going with this?  Ploidy analyis helps me get there.  IF I know two values out of three, I can solve for the third (i.e. determine the probably DNA weight of ST's pollen parent, then cross reference the list Ben has developed).  This would allow me to potentially pick the right species, ruling out others along the way.  I know the ploidy of Okamatoi, Ruprifraga, longipes var. latifolia 'Maruba', etc. so the equation may be solvable.  

I suppose I could just ask Paul Aden.   Anyone know his phone number or if he has an email address?   I'm going to look it up in his book right now and see what he says.  Bummer, he only lists their cultivar names, not parentage.  

If you or anyone has an inside track, please let me know.  I LOVE shiny leaves in small Hosta for a number of reasons.  Some plant out there gave ST its shiny leaf and P. Aden lists it as a hybrid.  I imagine I'm on the right track, but am always open to correcting course!   

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