Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fertile Forresttii Does It Again!

Little Petrocosmea forrestii is a mother again! While there are still some species that refuse to hybridize at all for me....like P. parryorum, and P. kerrii, and P. sp. 'China 2005', the species P. forrestii is taking up the slack for those species. So far, P. forrestii hybridizes more than any other species...having served as a mother in at least a half-dozen crosses for me. This year, I'm watching buds on P. forrestii crosses with sericea and minor.

The first of the forrestii x sericea seedlings flowered this week. I only got five seedlings from the cross. All five seedlings are showing buds. Foliage shows variation with some leaves narrow and cupped, like sericea and others showing rounded, flat leaves more like forrestii. All are quite small so far. I have them growing in two inch condiment cups, that have a capacity of two ounces...(I think.) Most are about the diameter of the cups...around two inches, with the largest, the first to flower...being about 2.5 inches in diameter. This seedling basically looks like a tiny P. sericea, with rounder leaves and very little of the cupping seen on sericea.

See the first flower to open below:

The first flower on P. forrestii x sericea..... can you see both parents in the flower? The flower is about the size of P. sericea, with a bit more of an upper lip to the corolla. A prominent white spot on the three lower lobes clearly comes from P. forrestii...although, sadly, none of forrestii's yellow came through. The dark purple blotch seen deep within the throat of P. sericea did come through in the progeny, and is just visible in this photo. Lower lobes are a bit more narrow and longer....more like forrestii.

The first seedling to flower from the cross looks much like a tiny P. sericea, although leaves are not as cupped as sericea.

This photo was a challenge....and my lack of photography skill didn't help anything. But, here is my best effort to show "MOM"...P. forrestii (left), "DAD", P. sericea, (right) and the seedling in the center. A side by side comparison shows the characteristics of both parents in the first flower.
I wonder, and wait, for the flowers on the other four seedlings. (P. forrestii x minor is just now showing buds peeking above the foliage.)