Friday, April 24, 2009

What about YOU, the reader?

A request: I know several people are now reading my blog and a few have commented. Thats great, I hope there are extended discussions develop over time. But right now, if you would be so kind, would you let me know if you are enjoying the content I have been presenting? Are there things you'd rather see? Topics you'd like to hear about? Something about my experience I have unintentionally left out of these posts? I live in a fairly insular environment and I am sure I sometimes take certain things for granted about the people who read my writings. If thats been the case here, I'd like to know so I can broaden my scope and/or change direction some. So.....whaddaya say?

PS: You do realize that you can click on the small photos in each post to see a full sized version, right?


  1. Firstly... the more I see of your blog the more inclined I am to maybe start one. Thankyou for adding the link to Rose Talk on your website. This is where I do the bulk of my blogging.

    Secondly... your photography is just beautiful and as a semi-professional photographer myself I appreciate the art in your photos as much as I do the art of your breeding. BUT!!!! Putting myself in my rose breeder shoes one thing I long to see more than anything is photos of the whole plant in a garden because as a photographer I also know that a good photo can 'spin a silk purse out of a sow's ear' ;) and as a breeder reading your accounts of how adding such-and-such a rose will add body and improved architecture it would be good to be able to see these things. The thing I love about rose breeding is dreaming up a cross and then imagining the result and seeing, in my mind's eye, how the rose will look in a garden. My favourite photo on your main website is the one of 'Gallicandy' in the garden. This is one beautiful rose grown beautifully and showing its merits as a garden subject (not to mention being a lovely photo). So if I could ask to see something different it would be whole plant shots or even shots of your garden (a virtual tour maybe).



  2. Enjoying? Are you kidding? It's wonderful! Yeah, yeah, yeah!

    And I agree with Simon, I'm learning tons from your accounts of what traits certain roses pass on.

    So yes, be assured that even if I'm not commenting, I'm reading, and looking forward to the next post with enthusiasm.

  3. I agree with both of the posts above. Just hearing and seeing the comments from a top notch hybridizer as yourself is worth it's weight in gold.

  4. Hi Simon, Fa,
    Thanks for your comments, glad you are enjoying this journal.

    I agree about showing the bush in photos as well, but like most hybridizers, I have the problem that my roses are all lined out in cramped test beds (mostly) about 18" apart, and its not possible to get a photo of any one plant isolated from the noise of everything else around it. You see, I am such a perfectionist when it comes to my photos that its very hard for me to show a photo that doesn't show off the subject to great advantage! (I suddenly pictured my "Magseed" peeking out through a tangle of 20 other roses surrounding it and wonder how I'd ever get a photo of the bush!) However, I will see what I can do.

    There are some plants that have been positioned where they can show off what the shrub looks like and I'll include the full plant whenever possible. I have a large specimen of 'Jeri Jennings in one greenhouse that I use for cuttings that is fairly easy to get a shot of and it will be at peak bloom soon.

  5. Thanks Mike, nice to know :-)

    Oh, FYI Kim's Hugonis hybrid is sulking AGAIN this year and 70% of the canes have died right after attempting to leaf out. It looks like there may be two or three blooms in total, assuming the cane they are on doesn't die back. I don't know what it is about my climate it doesn't like; it should be completely hardy here and thriving, but it does this two years out of three and often dies to the crown. Ugh!

  6. Hi Paul,

    In terms of showing the reality of rose hybridising, cramped beds might be a worthy photographic/journal subject in itself and certainly help educate potential hybridisers about the conditions under which roses are grown and trialled. I know when I first started the actual mechanics of performing the crosses was never really an issue... I find that kind of thing easy as is the process of analysing pedigrees etc... I really wanted to see pictures of other hybridisers set-ups and greenhouses etc because that's where I am at. I have more than 1000 seeds to handle this year and I have no idea how I'm going to do it... it's all slowly coming together but it all began hitting home today actually as I was sitting down to shell out several hundred seeds from tiny multiflora hybrid hips. How on earth am I going to handle this many seedlings and what was I thinking doing so many crosses and collecting that many OP hips!!! I'm sure I'm not the only one to bite of more than I can chew so I know I for one would not be too critical of less-than-perfect photos in the name of education :)

  7. Hi Paul, I am reading your blogs as much as I can and when I can....busy hectic schedule gets in the way....but I love your blog, its really interesting and informative.
    The one thing that I would love to see you add is more of your hybridizing how-to's such as what you already have on your web-site and how you improved on certain techniques, quicker and easier ways than what you did before, what newer equipment has worked better for you....I am sure there are quite a few new bybridizers out there that would like hearing about some of your fresh new methods of me!
    But you are a great writer, wonderful photographer, and it just seems to come so natural to you too.....quite a gift you have.

  8. Actually, Jeanie, very little has changed in my methods since I wrote about my technique (see: )

    I no longer use any chemicals to prevent Damping Off but simply apply 1/4 inch of perlite over top of the seed flats after the seeds are sown. That pretty much eliminates Damping Off. Otherwise, its the same process every year. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

  9. Really enjoying reading your blog, Paul.

  10. Hi Paul - I think the blog is great and the photographs are outstanding. I have been into photography for many years, so I can appreciate what you have done here. I've been tinkering around with rose hybridization (nothing as involved as what you're doing) so the information you provide is valuable. I only recently discovered the blog - I had been looking at - perhaps a link from there to the blog might be good.

    Enjoy reading your posts - keep up the great work!

    oh - also wanted to mention - I have "Jeri Jennings" growing in my yard this year...look forward to seeing how she grows.

  11. I love it! Very creative!That's actually really cool.


  12. I'd love to see some photos of a bunch of siblings all blooming from crosses that gave a wide variety of colors and flower forms. It's just always interesting to the hybridizer in me, as I do daylilies and iris, but only OP rose seeds(and those just for fun and to find things that do well right here on my own property in my exact soil and light conditions).