Fast germination!

I thought you might be interested in this - it sure surprised me! My “Sonia” bush open pollinated itself around 4/15. I cut hips from her on 8/21/05, removed the seeds on 8/21, soaked them in bromelain 1 day, peroxide 1 day then set them at room temperature on an h202 wetted papertowel in a petri dish on 8/23. To my amazement, a seed actually germinated on 8/28! I was so shocked I dropped it! I hope it makes it. It’s a very hefty little bugger with big thick cotyledons and fat root with numerous visible root hairs - very healthy looking.

Well congrats to you. I just had my first seed germination also. Honey Bouquet X Brass Band was in a vermiculite baggie at room temp. for about 3 weeks and checked it today and there she was.


That’s pretty fast too, Pat. Honey Bouquet x Brass Band could give you some nice seedlings.

That is great to get such a good start just as your weather is becoming more tolerable! That seedling ought to have a great head start on growing!

I may have reported this already on the forum, but once, believe it or not, I found inside a hip that I was opening a germinating seedling! Of course I damaged it, but there it was with a tiny root and light green cotyledons.

Jim Sproul

What a shame, Jim! I wonder if this sort of behavior would be genetically passed on to it’s seedlings?

Wow Jim… that is weird. I’ve seen this happen in Chayote squash all the time.

What was the rose that did this?

The phenomenon of germination in the fruit, if I remember right, is called vivipary. I experienced it with my lilies too and seen it on corn. I had some lily stems with capsules and cut and placed them in floral preservative to finish the ripening. THe capsules stayed green longer than I would expect and finally when I harvested them green opened them and found germinating seedlings inside. I’ve eaten older oranges with germinating seeds inside too. Maybe, like suggested, there is some genetic component that allows some seeds to be more prone to vivipary and probably some strong environmental component within the fruit that can occur and allow the seeds in the fruit to be more prone to it.

I’ve had “premature” germination with especially some Buck and mini roses in the past when I was giving them warm stratification. I had the harvested seeds in moist peat in baggies in the house for about a month before I put them in the fridge and as I put them in the fridge noticed some germination. I also had it happen on some R. sericea hybrid seedlings this year. I harvested the hips in July and noticed a couple weeks ago germination in the baggie of seeds with peat. Maybe some seeds just have less dormancy than others too???


Hum… Well, at least now I know that this thing has a name. Thinking on it, I’ve also seen this in my corn hybrids. (I’ve been growing and mixing them ever since I was a kid. First started with Mexican Hominey corn I stole from a store as a kid. Now they hardly look like Hominey, although some seeds are flat and meaty like the original. Just every kind of corn I can hybridize. Some hybrids are as tall as my house.)

As for early germination…

I’ve noticed that with my Queen Elizabeth, I can harvest the hips when they’re pretty green. And in a month, they germinate. Yet, when I allow the hip turn red, they will take a whole lot longer time to germinate.

I don’t really have an idea of how long I harvest. I don’t write down the pollination dates. I always eye things out. But I can say that when I do pick green Queen Elizabeth hips, the stem is a little twiggy (thinner than a fresh flower) and the sepals are crispy but not dry.

Enrique, I do not remember the name of the rose variety, but should have noted it. It would be nice to breed toward roses that exhibited early germination and without the requirement of cold stratification, but we would surely lose other good traits with such roses.

I’ll just keep mixing up the pollen and see what I get!

Jim Sproul

Ah, now I know why my QE failed to germinate last year! I should have picked them a lot earlier. This year I did - we’ll see how they do. I do keep track of open pollinated hips, and for hybrid teas, 41/2-5 months seems to be when color starts to change to yellow/green, at least here in Tucson. But when on the bush that long, though, the inside pulp is not juicy anymore.

As far as my little seedling goes, it looks like it will live, so hopefully in a year or so, we’ll see if it passes on it’s fast germination trait. Luckily it’s from a good parent. I’ve had some interesting open-pollinated seedlings from Sonia.