Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Transplanting tip #1

About working with R. wichurana hybrids.

One breeder I work with every year is Ralph Moore's 0-47-19, one of his most important hybrids used in the development of a number of his best roses. It is a cross of the species R. wichurana* and the old Floribunda from Tantau, 'Floradora'. ("Floradora' trivia: it now boasts 3466 descendants to its credit! Most of these come down to us through 0-47-19 and 'Queen Elizabeth')

I have found that there is a trick to raising seedlings from this first generation R. wichurana hybrid. They don't like to be transplanted from flats to pots at an early stage, or they tend to roll over and die. See that fairly large seedling in the upper right? Thats about the size these have to get before they can be transplanted successfully. So if you are working with R. wichurana or any of its first generation hybrids, you may want to let these get to at least the three leaf stage before transplanting them.

Oh, and one other thing: 0-47-19 has been my best hybrid for breeding Blackspot-free roses. I consider it a very important rose in the search for disease-proof roses. 0-47-19 was the seed parent for my 2009 repeat blooming Rambler 'Mel's Heritage', which is something like a repeat blooming 'Cecile Brunner', but more lax in habit.

*Yes, we are supposed to write the name as R. wichurana now and not the old spelling R. wichuraiana, which is now considered to be incorrect nomenclature. Classification systems grow and evolve and we have to adapt to these changes :-)

1 comment:

  1. This year I have done the rounds of fruit and vegetable stores to beg, borrow, and steal, (well... not steal...), large foam fruit/veg. boxes that I'm going to use as seedling flats this spring. I'm hoping this way I won't need to transplant them at all because they are 12(ish) inches deep and I'll be able to leave them till they have flowered (for the remontant ones) or are at least a couple of inches tall for the non-remontant ones. I just have train myself to plant the seeds properly so the roots don't get too inter-twined (which I'm not looking forward too... I'm not good at boring repetitive jobs). I have a few hips from wichurana and wichurana hybrid crosses this year so will leave them be for a while as recommended :) I have one cross between wichurana and a striped HT (Delbard) called 'Maurice Utrillo' (that is very healthy here and sets hips with ease) that I'm looking forward too seeing... I'm hoping for striped ground cover-type roses and also to repeat the type of cross that Mr Moore peformed to create 0-47-19. Another plan next season is to put wichurana onto 'Perfume Perfection' to see what it can produce along these lines as well. I just wish Delbards had listed the pedigree for 'Maurice Utrillo' because I have a feeling it isn't going to pass on the stripes. A project for next season with a 'Ferdinand Pichard' descendant maybe :)