Daylilies forum: Heredity of dormant vs evergreen foliage in breeding.

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Name: Vanessa
Northern Tablelands NSW Austra (Zone 8b)
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Handed
Sep 13, 2013 8:09 PM CST
A question for those with experience in breeding, can a cross between two evergreens result in dormant seedlings? I have made my first try at hybridising, using two evergreen daylilies and doing the cross both ways, ie one parent as the seed parent in one cross then the pollen parent in the other cross. It looks to me like some of the seedlings are dormant, but as I haven't seen how daylily seedlings act during winter I'm not sure. Also should I let the seedlings flower whenever they do, or pinch off the buds until they are a certain age? I'm prepared to be patient but obviously I'm curious. Any tips are welcome!
Name: James
South Bend, IN (Zone 5b)
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JWWC
Sep 13, 2013 8:24 PM CST
I can't answer the first portion of your question but I think a lot of people would let them flower. Many growers in the southern US, in zones similar to your own can get flowers in less than a year.

BTW, I have actually been to the northern tablelands in NSW - absolutely beautiful part of Australia!
Name: Vanessa
Northern Tablelands NSW Austra (Zone 8b)
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Handed
Sep 14, 2013 2:18 AM CST
Thanks! We are blessed with some amazing natural areas, still a lot of bush not cleared.
Name: Michele
Cantonment, FL zone 8b
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tink3472
Sep 14, 2013 5:39 AM CST
Hi Vanessa and Welcome! Welcome!

On the first question.....I'm no expert on the matter because I have only been hybridizing since 2011, however I would say yes it is possible to get a dormant from 2 evergreens. You have to remember that these plants go back 10 generations (maybe more) so you have to look back at what the parentage holds. And then to me it's still no guarantee because you really may not know what is lying dormant in those genes that will pop up down the road.

Look at ICICLES for example, the 2 parents are evergreens but the plant itself is dormant. If you look back at the parents of ICICLES they have dormant in their background.


Second question is everyone I know of lets the seedling go ahead and bloom whenever it gets ready to. Here we can bloom a seedling in under a year but there are some zones that have to wait 2-3 years to see a bloom. Plants tends to know when it is old enough/mature enough to bloom so I see no reason to pinch the blooms off.
[url=www.pensacoladaylilyclub.com]www.pensacoladaylilyclub.com[/url]
Name: Maurice
Grey County, Ontario (Zone 4b)
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admmad
Sep 14, 2013 8:09 AM CST
Handed said:A question for those with experience in breeding, can a cross between two evergreens result in dormant seedlings?

Yes, a cross between two evergreens can produce some dormant seedlings. Stout (in the 1940s) found that the evergreen characteristic is dominant to the dormant characteristic in diploids. No one has looked at their inheritance in tetraploids and in general the genetics of tetraploids can be more complicated. However, probably any complications in tetraploids would tend to make it more likely for tetraploid crosses involving only evergreens to produce some dormants.

Some evergreen x evergreen diploid crosses would not produce any dormant seedlings; other evergreen x evergreen diploid crosses may produce approximately 25% dormant seedlings. It is not possible to provide theoretical estimates of what tetraploid evergreen x evergreen crosses would produce (scientific research is needed).

One thing to keep in mind is that how one defines evergreen versus dormant may affect the numbers of the different types of seedlings one would find in crosses of evergreen diploids.

Maurice
Name: Vanessa
Northern Tablelands NSW Austra (Zone 8b)
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Handed
Sep 14, 2013 7:04 PM CST
Thanks a great deal for your answers, they tell me exactly what I wanted to know! It's great to know I can get help here, and I like to understand what I'm doing. Since I am in a cooler area, they probably won't flower this year, I have the potted seedlings in the shadehouse so I don't lose any, but if they need more sun I can plant them into my raised vege beds.

caitlinsgarden
Sep 15, 2013 5:59 AM CST
How do you know to call a seedling dormant or evergreen?
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
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Hemlady
Sep 15, 2013 6:41 AM CST
You wait till winter and if the foilage dies completely down it is dormant, if the foilage says green it is evergreen. Semi-evergreen would be in between the two.
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Name: Jan
Hustisford, WI
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philljm
Sep 18, 2013 5:49 AM CST
I live in a colder climate - and have 45, 2 year old seedlings. The first winter - which was pretty mild by our standards - I had a lot of what I would call evergreens - with a sprinkling of semi's and dormants. Last winter, which was very cold, nasty & snowy - when I dug down under all of that snow - every single one of those seedlings had foliage that had died down completely to the ground except 1 or 2. I think that labeling a plant dormant, semi or evergreen is not a simple things, and sometimes the results are based on where the hybridizer grows them. ~Jan
Name: Vanessa
Northern Tablelands NSW Austra (Zone 8b)
Gardening keeps me connected to the
Handed
Sep 19, 2013 1:37 AM CST
Jan you are probably right there, I wondered if it was possible to really tell in the seedlings' first winter whether or not they were really dormant/semi/evergreen since seedlings may be more tender, and also whether the shadehouse would modify the effects. I have trouble telling the evergreens from the semis even in the well established plants in the garden. But the dormant plants in my area are easy to tell, there is no sign of them whatsoever till spring!

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