It Can Be Fun To Breed Your Own Zinnias

Posted by @ZenMan on
As you already know, zinnias are easy to grow, and they come in a wide variety of colors, sizes, shapes, and descriptions. But did you also know that zinnias offer you an easy entry into the hobby of plant breeding?

You can simply save seeds from your favorite zinnia specimens. The plants from those seeds will present an assortment that is closer to your preferences, and repeated selection of the best from the best can make surprising progress.

Fortunately, zinnias are also very easy to cross pollinate. You can “be the bee” and choose to make some very interesting hybrids of your own. There are so many kinds of zinnias that you can grow, that the number of possible crosses you could choose to make is, as they say, “astronomical.” I am tempted to paraphrase the Dr. Seuss book, “Oh, the places you’ll go!” by saying “Oh, the zinnias you’ll grow!”

You will experience the thrill of anticipation every time one of your zinnias forms a first bud and starts to open its first bloom. That is true for all zinnias, but especially true for zinnias from seeds you saved or from your home-hybrid zinnias.

Will your zinnia hybrids look like what you expected them to be, or will there be surprises? You won’t know for sure until you see their blooms. You can save seed from your favorite hybrids, or you can go a step further and also make crosses between your hybrids. Either way, you are going to see a lot of interesting new zinnias of your own making. I have learned to “expect the unexpected.” The appearance of a mutation can be a game changer. But in any case, you will see zinnias that you couldn’t get from any commercial seed packet. And there will be a certain pride in that, adding to your sense of adventure as new zinnia forms appear before your eyes.

This article can end here. Or, it can continue, with your participation, over in the Annuals Forum.


Thumb of 2015-03-29/ZenMan/372a52

Comments and discussion:
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Deformed zinnia leaves by Marigold246 Jun 19, 2020 12:12 PM 2
zinnia cross breeding by Joshgardener Jun 1, 2016 9:08 PM 0
Zinnia Hybridizing Hobby by RickCorey Jul 5, 2015 12:59 PM 8

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