Monday, June 8, 2009

Starting off

I grow African Violets as a hobby. Some day I hope to get into it more seriously, join clubs, become a member of AVSA, register hybrids, etc, but for now that's all long range stuff. I'm just a hobby grower who keeps her (grandma's) house filled with African Violets of all different sorts and colors.

This last year I've been experimenting with hybridizing. It's an interesting project if you have the space to try it.

I started two batches just over a year ago. A (2 unlabeled violets, but if I were to make an educated guess based off when I got them and characteristics I would think Batch A was Rhapsody Stephanie I (bought in early 1996, Patented and with the Optimara label with some kind of fancy thing going) x Optimara Montana) and Batch B: Rhapsody Stephanie I x AnthoFlores Ramzy. Either way I'm not registering the offspring with ASVA because you have to be 100% sure of the parent's names. 95% or even 99% sure just doesn't cut it....

Photos and descriptions of the A and B batch are coming soon, probably in a later blog post.

My first C batch was a failure. I may have gotten one sprout but I don't hold high hopes for it. If it holds up I'll call it C-A.

I have a few seed pods ripening, but I'm not sure if I will plant them just yet. Space is a huge concern and you know when hybridizing with what looks pretty and is blooming at the time, those thoughts aren't taken into consideration. So we have my potential "Dragon crossings".

I crossed Ness' Orange Pekoe (mother) with Blue dragon (father). That cross if successful will be huge............crossing 2 large standards-what was I thinking? At least if I get to planting I will get to see if Blue Dragon is a carrier for Variegated leaves or not.

- Potential for 50% variegated offspring if BD is a carrier.
- Offspring will both have star shaped blooms. (Star shaped is recessive).
- Colors will probably range from blue to coral pink. I'm hoping for some coral colors.
- I'm hoping for BD's Raspberry edge.
- Red Reverse leaves for most offspring
- Size: large....(I read it's recessive.)
- will see if any carry genes for single dropping

- Can I register offspring from this batch in the future: very likely, because both are labeled and named varieties.

Pod #2: Optimara North Carolina I (mom) x Blue Dragon (dad)

- solid green leaves (no variegation)
- 50% chance of standard and large size. (unless Opt. Carolina proves to be dominant, then 100% will be standard)
- I'm aiming for some red here. Maybe some red violet.
- ideally like to see BD's raspberry edge on a red-violet flower.
- 50% star shaped blooms and 50% "Violet" shaped blooms.
- double, semi double, and possibly single blooms if they carry the trait.
- Red Reverse leaves for most offspring
- will see if any carry genes for single dropping

- can offspring from this cross be registered: IDK... Even though I am pretty sure it's Optimara North Carolina, I'd have to go back at the list I got from the greenhouse I bought it from. (They provided their list after I made a long distance call and requested.) If they got anything else like North Carolina on their list, then I probably can't. But if that's the only one, then I may be able to, but it's a stretch. For now I don't know. I doubt it.

When will these be planted? Probably not any time soon. The pods are still green, so there is still chance for something to go wrong before they ripen.

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