Average Seedlings Per Hip

“Average seedlings per hip” may be a useful statistic to use when formulating plans for potential crosses. Of course an even better statistic would be “average number of great seedlings per hip”, but that will have more to do with the combination of the seed and pollen parents.

I was reviewing the germination rate of a seedling that I would like to use as a new seed parent this year. I planted seeds of M249-1 for the first time this spring to check it’s germination rate because I like the plant, flower power and cleanliness, and it sets tons of hips. The germination rate was only 11% (somewhat lower than what I like to see), but the number of seedlings per hip was 2.5 which is reasonable. For comparison, I still use ‘Cal Poly’ on occasion, and although it’s germination rate is around 35% for me, because of the lower number of seeds per hip, the average seedlings per hip was only 1.9 this year. Given this statistic, I will be using M249-1 fairly extensively as a seed parent this year. FWIW, something to consider.

I’m a long way away from doing any sort of numbers that warrant meaningful statistical analyses, but I wondered, Jim, if those generalizations hold from one year to the next. I know that hip set, for instance, can be highly variable, and I was curious if you have seen that some plants fare better in some years while others are happier in other years in that regard?

Uhh… Did I understand that you average over 22 seeds per hip with M249-1? Now that is impressive.

Hi Philip,

While the success of particular crosses can vary from one year to the next, I try to use only reliable hip setters (nearly every cross sets a hip). Otherwise, the statistic mentioned above would have less meaning (e.g. if you only get 10% hip take, then seeds per hip would be very different in terms of seeds produced per unit of work, i.e. making crosses).

You did the math correctly! Yes, there were 215 seeds coming from 10 hips. M249-1 is one of those types that sets hips under every bloom, so it will take relatively fewer crosses to produce plenty of seeds. It also happens to be a “grandchild” of ‘Thrive!’.

That’s not the Thrive! seedling you brought me in Visalia, is it, Jim?

Hi Kim,

Yes, I brought you ‘Thrive!’. It has been a very good pollen parent for me. Although it sets lots of OP hips on mature plants, for some reason it is more reluctant to set hips with planned crosses. It’s germination has been about 20% for me.

The tally isn’t complete yet but out of about 120 seed lots there are 55 with germinations, some with only one or two seedlings.

Still doing the ground work and now have four cv’s to mostly dead head when not making a cross. Neil

You brought cuttings of Thrive! and a plant of a seedling of Thrive! you said you liked better. Amazing looking foliage, BTW!

[attachment 565 thriveseedling.JPG]

[attachment 566 thriveseedling1.JPG]

That foliage looks like plastic, and the green/burgundy contrast is so vivid…congratulations Jim, wow!

I have a rose (Morden Blush x William Baffin) that was very reluctant to set hips…maybe about 2 for 12. What was interesting is that five out of six seeds germinated…

George, I find the plastic flowers do best in my garden too. (Blackspot Hell 2.0)

If that is an improved Thrive, i.e. potentially marketable/patentable, I don’t suppose the parentage should be revealed… I wouldn’t mind getting a little plastic into my plants though. The cuticle just looks ridiculously impervious.

Blackspot Hell 2.0

Oh no…not you too, Philip LA!!


Yes, we have the new improved version. Much quicker and more efficient, though it still has lots of bugs.

I’ll bet my blackspot could take on your blackspot any day.

Awwww…c’mon, bring it on!!!


Some have said: “original and the best” …referring to our races of BS, of course.

me thinks some friendly rivalry happening here

Too funny :stuck_out_tongue:


…and too late for me (it is past midnight)…sooo, good night to those here, and good day to those over there !

Thank you for the comments about the ‘Thrive!’ seedling. Although ‘Thrive!’ has good blackspot resistance, it isn’t as blackspot resistant as ‘Knock Out’, but is better against powdery mildew in our climate. It also has glossier foliage than ‘Knock Out’ and does a good job of passing that trait along to it’s offspring.

I love rose leaves which have that “full gloss finish+dark Brunswick green color” … ummm like you sometimes see with camellia leaves (can’t immediately think of a better comparison, so sorry).

Kim… umm… are you sure you didn’t “groom” them leaves just for the smiley picture, with some kinda oil??