Daylilies forum: Re-creating Cultivars

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Name: Heidi
CT (Zone 5b)
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mom2cjemma
Aug 29, 2015 1:25 PM CST
So I have a question.

Lets say that I wanted a certain Daylily cultivar, but after searching high and low I couldn't find anyone that has a few fans to spare. The cultivar is registered and is older and lists the parent plants.

If you find those two parent cultivars and then breed those two parents, and end up with what appears to be that cultivar, can you call it that?

I am thinking that the answer is yes. I am also thinking that this could be a several year process and I might get lucky in the meantime and find the plants I am searching for...... maybe.
Heidi
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
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Hemlady
Aug 29, 2015 1:28 PM CST
The answer is yes but I would hate to think how many seeds from that particular cross you would have to plant, to get that particular plant. Could be hundreds.
Lighthouse Gardens
[Last edited by Hemlady - Aug 29, 2015 2:46 PM (+)]
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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
Aug 29, 2015 1:50 PM CST
I think that the answer is no. You may get one that looks almost identical, but I don't think it will be exactly the same.
Natalie
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
Aug 29, 2015 2:26 PM CST
A very interesting question but I don't think it would fit the cultivar definition of the International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants (ICNCP) under which the AHS has to operate. It also wouldn't conform to the AHS's definition of the originator of a cultivar, which is " The originator has been determined by the Board of Directors to be the person who has ownership of the entire cultivar when it blooms for the first time".
Name: Betty
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daylilydreams
Aug 29, 2015 2:41 PM CST
Natalie said:I think that the answer is no. You may get one that looks almost identical, but I don't think it will be exactly the same.


I totally agree with Natalie!
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Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
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Hemlady
Aug 29, 2015 2:48 PM CST
I agree Sue. Even if someone did create a plant that was identical, the owner would still be the one who registered it.
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Name: Maurice
Grey County, Ontario (Zone 4b)
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admmad
Aug 29, 2015 2:56 PM CST
mom2cjemma said:If you find those two parent cultivars and then breed those two parents, and end up with what appears to be that cultivar, can you call it that?

The simple answer is no, you cannot call it by the same name.

I am also thinking that this could be a several year process and I might get lucky in the meantime and find the plants I am searching for...... maybe.

If you produce enough seedlings you may get a seedling that seems to match the registered one, but it will never exactly match it. The only time two individuals exactly match is when they are identical twins or clones.

In the example, the seedling that appears to be the cultivar is a sibling and like human siblings even though it is very much like the cultivar the probability that it is the same is exceedingly small. If the plants are diploid then that probability could be approximated as 1/(4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4). There are 11 chromosomes and if we treat each chromosome as a unit (an over-simplification) and each parent as having two different chromosomes for each of the 11 pairs then that works out to be one in 4,194,304. If the plants are tetraploids then it becomes much more complicated. Again making all sorts of simplifying assumptions the probability could be 1/(4 x 4 x 4.... x 4 x 4) except in this case there are 22 fours or it could be 1/(36 x 36 x 36 .... x 36 x 36) with 11 thirty-sixes or something in between.

Maurice
[Last edited by admmad - Aug 29, 2015 2:57 PM (+)]
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Name: Gerry Donahue
Pleasant Lake, IN (Zone 5b)
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profesora
Aug 29, 2015 3:14 PM CST
In the example, the seedling that appears to be the cultivar is a sibling and like human siblings even though it is very much like the cultivar the probability that it is the same is exceedingly small. If the plants are diploid then that probability could be approximated as 1/(4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4). There are 11 chromosomes and if we treat each chromosome as a unit (an over-simplification) and each parent as having two different chromosomes for each of the 11 pairs then that works out to be one in 4,194,304. If the plants are tetraploids then it becomes much more complicated. Again making all sorts of simplifying assumptions the probability could be 1/(4 x 4 x 4.... x 4 x 4) except in this case there are 22 fours or it could be 1/(36 x 36 x 36 .... x 36 x 36) with 11 thirty-sixes or something in between.

[/quote]

I am curious about self pollination. Would you run the numbers?

Thanks,

Gerry


[Last edited by profesora - Aug 29, 2015 3:22 PM (+)]
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caitlinsgarden
Aug 29, 2015 3:38 PM CST
I have always heard that the answer is no, no, and no! Much simpler to buy a new plant.
Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
Aug 29, 2015 3:46 PM CST
Hemlady said:I agree Sue. Even if someone did create a plant that was identical, the owner would still be the one who registered it.


I am not sure that you would ever get an "identical" plant. It may look pretty much identical, but I don't believe it would be. So many siblings look so close that it is hard to tell them apart, but there are usually very slight differences.

If it is close enough, and it is exactly what you are looking for, that would be good enough for me. I'd keep it as a seedling, and use it for hybridizing. If it is so close to the other one that you can't tell them apart, I'd never register it.
Natalie
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
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Hemlady
Aug 29, 2015 4:42 PM CST
I certainly learned something about genetics today. Very interesting. Then I guess I don't have to worry about making the same crosses between plants every year.
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Name: Maurice
Grey County, Ontario (Zone 4b)
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admmad
Aug 29, 2015 4:51 PM CST
profesora said:I am curious about self pollination. Would you run the numbers?
Thanks

OK.

Keep in mind that this is very much over-simplified and probably too high as estimates (take them with a very large grain of salt).
Diploid.
Each of the eleven pairs of chromosomes will be treated as a unit. Bear in mind that there are probably about 25,000 genes in a daylily and that means approximately 2,000 genes on each chromosome. Each chromosome of a pair will then be different. So if I looked at pair number 1 we would have 1a and 1b. With self-pollination the seedling (again just for chromosome 1) could be 1a/1a or 1b/1b or 1a/1b. There is a complication; the 1a/1b can be produced in two ways so the probabilities for each pattern are not equal at 1/3 each but are 1/4, 1/4 and 1/2. So we have a range of probabilities for the diploid from a low of 1/4,194,304 that is 1/(4x4x4x4x4x4x4x4x4x4x4) to 1/(2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2x2) which is 1/2,048.

Tetraploid
Now, tetraploids are complex (I'm not sure my calculations are correct). At one extreme it would be 1/(4x4...4x4) but 22 of the fours to 1/(2x2..2x2) but 22 of the twos (1/4,194,304. That would apply when the 44 chromosomes of the tetraploid act as if they are 22 pairs. However, they can also act as 11 quadruplets. In that case (for one chromosome set) there appear to be six patterns that appear only once, twelve patterns that can occur twice and one pattern that can occur six times. If everything is reasonably okay with my calculations that is an extreme range from 1/(36x36...36x36) with eleven thirty-sixes to 1/(6x6...6x6) with eleven sixes or 1/362,797,056.

Maurice
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
Aug 29, 2015 5:41 PM CST
The reason I thought Heidi posed an interesting question is because, under the code of nomenclature, a cultivar doesn't necessarily have to be a clone. For example in 2.12 of the code "An assemblage of individual plants grown from seed derived from uncontrolled pollination may form a cultivar when it meets the criteria laid down in Art. 2.3 and when it can be distinguished consistently by one or more characters even though the individual plants of the assemblage may not necessarily be genetically uniform." I'm not suggesting this applies to daylilies but just to illustrate that in some plants cultivars aren't inevitably clones.

In practice daylily cultivars are asexually reproduced clones and the other possibilities defined under the code for seed produced cultivars don't really seem to fit. I'm curious to know if the AHS has ever defined what it considers a cultivar (the earlier comment about the "originator" also seems to exclude Heidi's example). My understanding is that in past days, perhaps before the inception of the ICNCP (which the AHS has to follow, being the international cultivar registry for daylilies) not all daylilies that we consider cultivars were vegetatively reproduced clones, although that is probably always the case these days. I still agree that in the case under discussion the answer would be no, though.
Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
Aug 29, 2015 6:23 PM CST
I believe that a clone is an exact replica, so a clone of a particular plant couldn't be a different cultivar. Is that correct? It says above that "a cultivar doesn't necessarily have to be a clone." I'm confused. Nothing new there. As I have understood it, a cultivar is different, and not identical. It may look the same, but it isn't the same. A clone would look the same, and be the same. Shrug!

Human identical twins don't count. They look identical, but they don't necessarily act identically, because their brains are different. Luckily we're just talking about plants!
Natalie
Name: Gerry Donahue
Pleasant Lake, IN (Zone 5b)
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profesora
Aug 29, 2015 6:42 PM CST
Maurice, thank you so much for the academic exercise. I appreciate the intricate thought process.

I have self pollinated because I am curious to see the results, and identify characteristics also visible from parents and grandparents.
[Last edited by profesora - Aug 29, 2015 7:10 PM (+)]
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Name: Gerry Donahue
Pleasant Lake, IN (Zone 5b)
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profesora
Aug 29, 2015 6:53 PM CST
On the subject of clones, I may contribute some information that I have learned primarily from my experiences with hosta tissue cultures. Each clone, in theory, is identical to the donor.
What happens sometimes, with hostas that produces a different cultivar, is mutation. A hosta mutates frequently to adapt. Mutations occurs to clones because the shock of cloning puts the chromosomes in flux, producing a variegation.

There are many beautiful variegated hostas caused by cloning.
[Last edited by profesora - Aug 29, 2015 6:54 PM (+)]
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Name: Becky
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beckygardener
Aug 29, 2015 7:19 PM CST
Gerry - That's interesting about hosta clones. Could be a good thing to have a cultivar cloned.

On the other hand ...
What I had read on another thread on this forum is that cloned (tissue cultures) daylilies can appear different in bloom and in scape height. This is a link to Julie's story about clones:
http://garden.org/thread/view_post/935784/
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Name: Heidi
CT (Zone 5b)
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mom2cjemma
Aug 29, 2015 7:30 PM CST
Okay so this has been an interesting conversation and I guess that it raises more questions about developing new cultivars in general.

If I take Plant A and Plant B and pollinate them for 4 consecutive blooms, I will end up with 4 sibling pods. So what about the seeds inside? If there are 2 seeds in each pod, are those 2 seeds identical twins or just 2 more siblings (fraternal twins) produced from the union of A & B???

So I guess that my next question is that when I plant those 8 seeds, will I potentially end up with 8 new cultivars?

And another question... so Mr. Daylily went and created a new cultivar from plant A & B. Overtime, he decided that he really liked this new flower and so then what???? He had to wait for it to grow new fans so that way he could grow his supply before he could register the new cultivar?? Will he never be able to use the seeds if they were self pollinators to increase his supply???

Finally, if he registers his cultivar, sell his supply to a few growers and then all of the plants die off, is that the end of that cultivar??



Heidi
Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
Aug 29, 2015 8:12 PM CST
Heidi, there are registered daylilies from crosses of the same cultivar, and possibly the same daylily (self polinated), and they look different than the parent(s). Wish I could name some off the top of my head, but I can't. Maybe someone else can help with that.

I think that the seeds in one pod are siblings, but not identical. I've seen many pictures of siblings that look nothing alike, though the seeds came out of the same pod. I'm not sure what you would call the seeds from different pods on the same scape though. I haven't actually seen that talked about before.

You don't have to wait to register a plant until you have enough to sell it. Many people register them with no intention of ever selling them. I would think that if someone intended to sell them, they would wait until they had a good supply, since daylilies tend to bring in the most money during their first year. It wouldn't "pay" to register it, and then have to wait several years until you had enough of the plant to offer it for sale, because everyone would look at the registration date, and consider it an older daylily. Does that make sense? I may have confused myself!

And yes, if all of the plants are dead from a cultivar, it is gone. Happens pretty often, I think.
Natalie
[Last edited by Natalie - Aug 29, 2015 8:26 PM (+)]
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Name: Gerry Donahue
Pleasant Lake, IN (Zone 5b)
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profesora
Aug 29, 2015 8:16 PM CST
Becky-- you are correct. Cloning daylilies has not proven to be productive, and daylilies multiply much faster than hostas.

There is also the attitude difference toward tissue culture plants: Daylily growers are not interested in a mutation as a result of cloning. Hosta growers are thrilled to see a mutation and watch it continue to mutate until it becomes stable. Sometimes the results are spectacular.

Of course, hostas mutate in the garden all the time. The majority of variegated hostas are mutations, not seedlings. It is very difficult to produce a variegated seedling.

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