Are you ready? It's time for our 14th annual photo contest! Enter your best pictures of the year, for a chance to win a calendar and annual subscription here. Hurry! Deadline for entries is October 21.
Okay...here are some very quick notes...
B.aurea can be cross pollinated with versicolor, suaveolens, or another aurea hybrids pollen. Any combination within those three is possible,but one is best to remember that Brugmansia are largely self sterile. A sister seedling can pollinate a sister seedling or either of its parents. The 5 fuzzy parts inside the flower that drop dust are called the anthers and the parts one uses to pollinate the single pistal in the center. The center pistal...its tip is called the stigma and is the part that is pollinated. This tip will occassionally split open a bit so one can pollinate inside the stigma as well as on the sides of its tip. One can apply pollen to the stigma or tip of the pistal before the flower actually opens by tearing the flower open from the bottom. As soon as one sees the buds forming one should begin to water a bit more liberally generally and one should continue to water a bit more liberally until the seed pod is picked. Not watering the Brugmansia enough while the seedpod is developing can result in small and even undeveloped seedpods. My seedpods average anywhere from 160-420 seeds. Thats a lot of seeds for most people and it produces many more Brugmansia than simply taking cuttings...One selects a hybrid one is going to hybridize with because it has characteristics one would like to expound upon or because it has characteristics one thinks may be hiden within..ie it hasn't been hybridized with before or its a wild specimen. One can pair the two most floriferous early bloomers for instance in ones yard to try to come up with a hybrid that outblooms and blooms much earlier than either parent. Sometimes one does not get the all of the traits one is looking for in the first cross. When this happens one takes the seedling and crosses it to another seedling and or back to both of its parents.
Hybridizing is very simple...its trying to plant your favorite seed that is the hardest. You want to plant all of your seed and to select all of your seed to plant...at planting time it seems as if all of your crosses are your favorite...each new bloom is like a miracle waiting to happen..eagerly awaiting the luck of the draw and yet one always is connected to the fact that you selected that pollen to go with that pistal for a reason...you knew that Brugmansia had the most buds each time out and or the earliest blooms or perhaps the darkest pink or the widest flowers...best to best is my motto or mostest to mostest and then pray for just a handful of luck to come your way. If you don't get lucky with a batch or nothing strikes your fancy then perhaps one is not realizing that one of your seedlings while not the shape or color that you wanted is blooming at 5 months instead of 7. Its as simple as that. You can then cross the 5 month bloomer to the 7 month and get the color and shape you wanted and the earliness of blooms or whatever the trait is your going after. Don't forget to remove the corolla before it starts to rot as rotting flower parts can also destroy a seedpod before it gets underway. I have already lost one of my prized seedpods due to forgeting this very simple rule.
It's going to be next year for me, I'm sure, so I'm going to have to make a book from all the lessons here. I now have several that should be blooming size by frost. btw, with one exception :(, all the babies you sent me are doing fabulous!! Wonderful growth, and even the ones I cut and made two are doing great. I can grow them, but can I get them to bloom, hmmmm... sixty four dollar question. Seems like it's feeding day, so off I go!!
Now that's another question, how often do you feed, and what do you use?
do you have to do the extra watering on a plant that is 8 to 10' high or is that for a potted plant also wondering how long does it take for a seed pod to be ready to harvest? love reading your threads learning as much as possible thanks
Irish, the majority of my seedparents are in the ground and over 10ft high by their first year of growth. Watering 2 times a day is best by all means if they are in the ground and one wants to have seed. If they are in a pot one can actually water a bit less unless of coure they are rootbound. As a general rule of thumb, if the leaves are drooping during seed production time then your going to have a lower seed set to some extent. Really depends on all the circumstances and to what degree. For instance, most seed grown and ground grown Brugs grown in full sun will drop a bit during the noon hours if its hot enough. Ideally one would water during the hottest months just as the sun rose and just as it fell. Not to mention during the noon hours. If its drooping..water it. Sprinklers work great and keep off the mites as well if one can use them 2 times a day. Snails will still be a problem though as will caterpillars, rabbits, etc if one is growing a few hundred or more close by. In my oppinion, if a seedling doesn't bloom within its first year of growth it doesn't have any characteristics that can make up for it that I care to see. I let more patient hybridizers grow Brugmansia for longer periods of time to see blooms and I do get an occassional slow grower or late bloomer from them. I'm just not that patient. I would rather breed for earliness of blooms and numbers of blooms first. Everyone has their preference. Fast maturing Brugmansia are my preference and I do have several Brugmansia seedlings that are very short when they first bloom that I still like. Its how fast, early, and how many that catch my eye. Fragrance, color, shape, etc can then be selected out of those hybrids that meet all the earlier requirements.
Seedpods take 4-8 months on average to mature. One can speed this up a very slight bit by keeping the seed pod/stigma slightly humid. The calyx performs this function if it does not fall of. The calyx remains far enough away so that it does not promote fungus as well. Double flowered Brugmansia are very prone to rotting via the mass of corolla when one tries to set seed to them as one invariably damages the corolla. Best to simply remove the corolla on doubles before one pollinates or shortly thereafter.
You make me blush...you have such wonderful hybrids of your own. To tell you the truth, I was hoping to get you to tell us a few of your secrets in here as well. Nevermind the luck stuff. I do not doubt a bit of good luck helps-statistics tells us it does...but to blame it all on luck. I simply love your hybrids. As if you needed any of the above info Gloria. You trully do please me by your ever so humble ways. I wish I could be half as humble as you. The truth of the matter is though, when I get something I like from one of my seedlings I just bubble up with pride even if their is another hybrid that is already out their that is similar. I know that hybrid came out of my seedlings... and that in itself gives me satisfaction. That and knowing that I can cross my seedling with the other hybrid it resembles and perhaps come up with something better in the long run. Of course, better is a matter of oppinion. What is it that you like in a Brug...or what is it your after when you are trying to help create a new cultivar...
Ahh, for those up north, B.arborea will cross with B.sanguinea and B.vulcanicola and any combination inbetween. B.arborea will supposedly self seed as well. I haven't hybridized with these last three species myself so take this with a double pinch of salt. If I were to work with them though. I would most likely like to work with B.arborea x flava or B.arborea x vucanicola x B.arborea. Then cross the resulting offspring and work on a nice red arborea.
Ahh, what are you crossing? Unknowns? Species at least? Hybrids? Hmm, what do they look like? Ahh, easiest one to answer is this, what color to what color? Pinks to pinks or pinks to oranges or double whites to double oranges? Or wheww wee, the list goes on. I have been very impressed with Candida Knightii x aurea seedlings I have seen so if thats what you have chosen to hybridize with I think you will be pleasantly startled with the results.
You need a different variety to breed with. Another pink species or hybrid. You are going to have a devil of a time trying to cross the same hybrid to itself even if they are rooted seperately. The genetics are still the same. Now if they were seeds from the same cross you could cross them to each other, still couldn't cross them to themselves though.
Thanks what I have when I bought my home has grown from under my neighbors fence I have just taken cuttings to add more.I had written they were pink but I ment that they were peach I type like I think all confused thanks again
Hmm, the candida white species? In my experience its not a good pollen donor for the most part. Better as a seed bearer. Still, their are much better Brugmansia hybrids for seed and or pollen. The Frosty pink generally always has good strong pollen and is a good seed setter as well. Of course, their are better seed setters. Dr.Sues is a wonderful seed setter as well though...
Gloria, if you have an extra aurea yellow, i have some things for trade, probably not any brugs you don't have, most of what i have i have gotten this summer. i think the last time i was talking with you my email was messed up coming off DG, then my email server was down that weekend...the pink plumeria seedling is around 10-12 inches tall, about a dozen leaves on it, also have an extra asiatic variegated crinum pup, good sized...
I take it you like versicolor hybrids the most? I see so many versicolors being posted from you. Expect the next thing you will be working on are versicolor hybrids? Perhaps to some of your other hybrids? I have an unknown white versicolor that was sold to me as an aurea from Brug hybridizer, its a white though. Very long tendrils, corolla stuffed into the calyx just enough to make you suspect a bit of aurea in the blood line somewhere.
A side note on hybridizing.
Many people that hybridize as a hobby or even as a profession freeze pollen so they can use it at a later date. I tend to do this myself quite a bit. I use everything from q-tips to paint brushes to store apply pollen. Best to take a q-tip or a bunch of q-tips and fluff up the ends, cut them in half so as to have very short ends that can fit in a film canister or such. Get the q-tips with those fluffed up ends and soak them in pollen. Thoroughly cover them in pollen. Then freeze in an airtight container that is labeled. You can even use those little bead boxes from walmart with the different compartments. I tend to use those as well as one can fit 24 or more types of pollen in them and keep them seperated as well. Best to put the whole clear beading box in a ziplock bag if you do it that way though as you need to keep the water out. Once you use a q-tip to hybridize with you don't put it back in the box as the moisture can ruin the rest of the pollen you have collected. Put the beading box back in the ziplock and back in the fridge. Hope this helps a bit more. Ahh, life is so good when the pollen is good. Collect and store the pollen when its at its best and you can pick and chose a bit more. Use stickers or labels on each film canister or compartment to label the type of pollen and or the date it was collected. Replace old pollen with fresh when it becomes available. Q-tips, ziplock bags, film canisters, plastic boxes with compartments, and perhaps needle nose pliers or wire cutters to cut the q-tips with. When applying the pollen fresh, you can often tear the corolla off of one flower and simply hold it by the calyx-this enables you to use the flower itself as the applicator. I find that gently pinching the calyx opens the other anthers away from the pistal and one can then remove the anthers without damaging the pistal if one does not want to damage the flower...
Hmm, Ecuador pink hybrids...If I were using Ecuador pink again this year...I would cross it to Dr.Sues again...any aurea hybrid...or Isabella. I do not think by a long shot I have tapped Ecuador pinks full potential with my Dr.Sues x Ecuador pink Cross. So many of those seedlings were slow growers I had to get rid of a vast majority of them. If you trully want a spectacular hybrid...in my oppinion...its best to have a ton of luck and to know what you want the most. Stick to what you want as best as you can, but don't deny good luck when it comes your way. Let a hybrid lead you in a new direction if it looks promising. I personally set a bunch of seed to a few crosses I want as I want to be able to pick out the fastest growers. Next, one picks out the types of leaves one likes. If you like narrow leaves then you look through a thousand or so seedlings and pick out the 100 or so that have the narrowest leaves. If you like velvety leaves then you pick out the ones with the most velvety leaves. If you like serration then you pick out the ones with the most serration. I do this because I want to be assured from the start that characteristics I am after are present. I do plant a few oddballs in that aren't what I am after just to get a feel for what I am throwing away and for a bit of luck as well. Next, I toss the ones I don't want or that don't have the leaf characteristics, velvety texture, fuzzy stem, etc. I then plant the ones I want which are a very small number compared to the ones I started out with. I plant them all in the ground during the spring or fall and try to get them large enough that they flower within 7-9 months from being planted. If they are planted late in the year then they freeze and only the strongest come back. I plant them all in rows like corn as well. This makes sure they are all in fierce competition while they are growing. Only the most healthy survive. The ends are were my weak hybrids can survive and often do for a bit. Those that don't flower the first year or grow fast enough are eliminated either through natural selection or by mechanical and chemical means. Those that flower early and don't flower heavily enough are also eliminated making way for the less hardy ones underneath that have managed to hang on for a bit. Giving them a bit of a chance. I admit my hybridizing goals are not the same as others, but thats what makes hybridizing fun. Everyone has their own preferences and goals. Everyone has their own bit of luck. For me, I like to start thousands of seeds to select those I want to grow. I don't know what a seed holds for me till it germinates and even then I only know what the leaves and small stems tell me. Some are deformed, some are serrated, some are serrated and velvety, varing degrees of everything inbetween. Long thin leaves, large wide smooth edged leaves,rolling wrinkled leaves and so much more from a large assortment of seeds. Many of the seedlings lose these characteristics as they get older and acquire new ones or the old characteristics become less pronounced while new ones become evident. Hybridizing for these traits may make them become more self evident and more dramatic. Less dissappearing and more benefits to be reaped...but its all in the eye of the beholder. Germinate 1000 seeds of say Dr.Sues x Ecuador pink and select out the best 100 according to your own standards to plant in the ground and raise to maturity. Thats one way. That way enables you to grow several types of hybrids as well. Still, one could simply grow the best half of those and select the best at a later state. How one hybridzes and how much stock one choses to hold in a hybrid or in selecting ones hybrids is a personal matter that often changes from year to year. Personally, if I had 10,000 seed of a single cross I would be happy. I could then select out the best 500+ to grow from that cross after they germinated. Select out the best 2 or 3 during the first year. The best 2 or 3 early bloomers, etc. Killing off any that don't bloom in that first year. I like early bloomers. Someone else might grow them all to maturity to make sure they had the best bloom overall and not just the best early bloomer.
Breeding for early blooming flowers should eventually make ones hybrids all early blooming. So that any hybrids created using two of my hybrids would result in 1st year bloomers. Take this a step forward from that and you can begin to say that hybrids resulting from this cross will result in seedlings that will bloom in their 5-7 month...and so on. Or, hybrids created from this will be largely floriferous or this or that...whatever you seek to draw out and express more will be expressed more as you will select those traits...
You know, I don't know if I have a favorite..I think I'd love to have one of all of them...my DH should hear me say that. LOL
I again printed your information and will keep it for reference.
I do have a Cypress Garden x Charles Grimaldi Hybrid that was given to me and it has a very,very large white flower on it..the flower looks like a Versicolor Alba but much larger...doesn't bloom an awful lot. What do you think that would do if crossed with the E.Pink?
Glory, Hybrids created from that would for the vast majority be versicolor in shape. Perhaps a few light peaches or pinks and a very rare orange or dark peach. I would expect to see a lot of variation in leaf characteristics though with all of the different species involved in that mix. Thats what I dream of anyway when you tell me about that cross. Sounds like a very nice versicolor cross to make and one where a few thousand seeds germinating would be the way I would chose to go. Selecting the the ones I personally liked the best to grow, perhaps somewhere between 100 to 500 max to grow to yearling maturity in the ground. I wouldn't expect seedlings created from that cross to be very prolific bloomers though. I would perhaps cross it to B.alba if I was going for prolific versicolor flowers. I would also expect the vast majority of them to be slow growers. Hence a need to plant a large majority from that cross. You never know though and you could get very lucky. The Cypress Gardens has a tinge of pink and yellow in it after all and is a fairly descent grower as well.
If I was going for a bit of flare, cross it to Isabella or Insignis Gold...I always try to visualize what each of the parent plants looked like, properties they have...what they had to add...what may be hidden in that seedling even though it doesnt show those traits...and so on. Imagination...takes a bit of that and luck...bunches of luck...
Remember, its the unexpected things a hybrid seedling gives us...what we don't expect or what we think is a million in one chance with that hybrid that attracts us to new possibilities...don't not make a cross just because another doesn't see its potential. Perhaps you see something they fail to see. That and we all know you have plenty of luck. Perhaps the best method for you is to simply pick the best seed from each seed pod off the bat and then plant only the best and toss the seeds before you even germinate them...I know I would love luck like that.
If you were hybridizing B.sanguinea trying to get a heat tolerant and cold tolerant Brugmansia. I would love to try a few thousand Flava x arborea seeds. That would be a good way. Let them all grow in the summer time and any that couldn't take the heat would be dead so to speak. Cross the resulting seedlings together to create a hardy red arborea. This may take many crossings back and forth, but I do believe if it hasnt already been done it should be.
If you need an Isabella or an Insignis Gold I think that enough of these are floating around that our members here could help you out. If not, I could trade you 3 or so of each for a few of your aurea gold hybrids, aurea white hybrids, or any aurea hybrid... This is my secret agenda...make sure that I have enough aurea hybrids in each yard that I can always set seed to an aurea. In all truthfullness...I have considered getting rid of all but one of every specimen of Brugmansia I have and growing only the aurea hybrids. Only setting seed with the aurea hybrids, but occassionally using the others as pollen donors. As it is, right now I have upwards of 2-6 of most all of my hybrids. Exceptions are of course some of my newer hybrids and of course most of my seedlings. Do you find it hard to take cuttings of your Brugmasnia that you trully like? Worst time for me to take cuttings...when seeds are forming or when their is a potential to make seeds...thus winter is the only time of year I can make cuttings on the plants outside and feel good about it with those that I want to hybridize with at least and even then the plants down south...well I would rather gamble with them as many winters I can get a few extra sets of seed pods down south. For those that live further south well those are the Brugmansia lovers that can hybridize year round most years without any worries...Ahh, almost makes one want to move. Of course where we are has its advantages as well. Too fill the yard with nothing but aurea hybrids, yes I do feel as if thats not too far off in the future, but I still feel as if I must have the other species and hybrids just to let others see the difference and to add to the gene pool...sorry for rambling on in every direction...
Brugmansia: Can I cross the flava hybrid with x knightii? I would try to get the seeds on the x flava. Would I get double white flowers on the x flava? It's been pouring rain here for too long, supposed to get hot this week. Should be a good time hopefully as both have lots of flowers on them. Wish me luck.
Do you have any pure Aurea Gold...no hybrid? My Aurea Gold died last winter and all I have now is the Aurea Hybrids. I will be happy to send you a lot of Jessie Noel (Aurea Hybrid)..this Brug is taking over the front corner my house. Did I send you any Becca Lynn another Aurea Hybrid?...remember these were all from the same seed pod but they are all a little different.
I was able to find the Isabella and Insignis Gold already..super memebers.
Yes, I too hate to cut my Brug till the fall but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. I have a Jessie Noel growing behind my gazebo that takes over the walkway unless I trim it back every so often.
Gloria, just made it back from down south were I found several of my seed pods had died without me to take care of them. This is what I brought back with me...a few Candida pinks, a rooted bottom off a Cypress Gardens, a White seedling of mine-... The seedling has the same basic shape as the Isabella and Insignis Gold only its eye is a bit wider and its fragrance is the strongest I have in the yard. As with all the seedlings I keep, its a first year bloomer, great seed setter and very vigorous. Set a pod to it in its first year from its very first flower. At anyrate, thats all I have besides what I have in this yard which most everyone here already has most of whats in my yard...up here. As I don't make trips down south that often even I don't have everything moved up here yet that I have. To be honest, I am not sure whether I am going to move everything up here yet or not. As for the Yellow Aurea wild version. I have that one and the white wild version down south and all the cuttings I am making from that one will be going to fill up this yard and the field for a while as that is what I intend to specialize in. I can let you have Isabella, Insignis Gold, my white suaveolens hybrid...or a few seedpods from one of my pink aurea x pink suaveolens x frosty pink hybrids...its up to you as I just picked them while I was down South...
And if you don't mind waiting a bit,...Isabella x Frosty pink and Pink Suaveolens x Isabella...My favorites, my B.Butterfly x Isabella seed is all mine though.