The Q&A Archives: Hybrid Question

Question: For example, my first year I plant a particular sunflower hybrid. I save the seeds and plant them the second year. I also buy a new pack of that same sunflower hybrid the second year and plant them along with old seeds from the first year. If the bees cross pollinate the flowers from old seeds with the flowers from the new seeds then what will my result be for the third year? If I keep doing this year after year can I get a sunflower that retains it characteristics similar to that of the first seed packet I bought?

Answer: The answer to your question really depends on the variety or varieties you are using. Some seed strains are very stable and others are not; hence some hybrids will breed true while others will not, but roguing the population of undesirable plants will certainly help preserve the purity. The best answer is to try it and see what happens -- what fun!

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