First 2009 Hulthemia Seedlings

The first seedlings of the season started blooming today - all of them from hulthemia crosses (I have noticed too, that the mature hulthemia plants bloom earlier than the regular modern roses).

The cross showing the most blooms today (4) is from K34-1 X H65-2. K34-1 is a repeat blooming mini with a tidy plant habit, that is a 5th generation from Hulthemia persica through work with Chris Warner’s “Tiggle”. H65-2, in contrast, resulted from a cross that I made in 2002 direct with ‘Tigris’ X [(‘Tobo’ X ‘Singin’ in the Rain’) X ‘Henry Fonda’]. The seeds from the H65 cross didn’t get planted until 2004, because I had broken my leg and the seeds weren’t with the other seeds when friends from the rose society planted my seeds in 2003. H65-2, being a non-remontant somewhat rangey shrub, didn’t bloom until 2007. I used it some that year and was pleased to get a few repeat blooming seedlings from it last year (2008), but all of the crosses were made with non-hulthemia seed parents, so most of the blotches were not that well defined.

This past year, I found that K34-1 set hips and its seeds germinated well, so I used H65-2 on it extensively. There were 23 hips, with 123 seeds, 56 germinations, but only 43 survivors. Of these, 21 appear non-remontant and 22 have flower buds (indicating remontancy). Of these, four bloomed today, and all of them so far have exhibited the blotch. These two below were the best. They both appear to be minis. They are only 1 1/2 to 2 inches tall, blooming for the first time.

As with previous repeat blooming hulthemia seedlings, the blotch on these should improve significantly with age. Both new seedlings have better first blotches than the seed parent K34-1 had when it first bloomed.

The next photo is of their petals. The brighter yellow one appears to be the better of the two at this stage, but will have to wait to see how they develop.

The parents are below:

Jim Sproul

Beautiful Jim. You’ve certainly made amazing progress with these.

Gorgeous! Well done!

Bringing together two separate Hulthemia lines is very exciting stuff,

Great work.

I saw these on your website Jim and they are so fascinating. To be able to get that rare blotch on each petal like that is an absolute work of art. And because of your work whenever I look at the petals of my seedlings I find myself always looking at the tip of it to see if there is a blotch of color and I probably would otherwise never have noticed it before. Thanks so much for sharing these with us.

Thanks for the kind comments.

Robert, seems that there is finally a “critical mass” to work with. I have seen a good number of repeaters even coming from OP seeds on non-remontant seedlings of ‘Persian Sunset’.

Fara, thank you. As rose breeders, we are so fortunate to get to see the creations that God produces through the crosses we make.

Paul, I think that it is probably key to keep bringing separate lines back together, especially to lines “closer” to ‘Tigris’. I am beginning to think that there are more independent genes than one, that define the Hulthemia blotch.

Jeanie, if you haven’t added Mr. Moore’s Hulthemia hybrids to your rose garden, you might want to try a few (now sold through Nor’East).

As more new seedlings bloom, I will use this thread to post photos.

Jim Sproul

Very nice work Jim. Carolyn is very impressed with what you’ve accomplished as well. Did Ralph’s ‘Persian Autumn’ contribute anything to your Hulthemia breeding? Its the best of the group for me, offering good repeat and gradually building up to a good looking cascading shrub.


Hi Paul,

Thanks for the nice comments!

After first seeing photos of ‘Persian Autumn’, I purchased it along with others of Mr. Moore’s Hulthemias. Unfortunately, it died before I had a chance to use it. Though I have several of his including ‘Roses are Red’, T2, and T3, I have only used ‘Persian Sunset’ and his “Tigris 2” in crosses. Virtually all of the non-remontant (and I am meaning bloom on old wood here), have rangey growth, including mine derived from ‘Tigris’ and ‘Persian Sunset’. The fully remontant seedlings have better conpact shrub habit. Though many of these still tend to have more lax canes, some produce nice bushy plants.

Jim Sproul

Here are a couple more recently blooming sister seedlings, coming from the same seed parent, K34-1.

The first is quite a tiny seedling, but has good blotch development.

The next is larger and also shows good blotch development for it first bloom.

You can size the fairly large size difference between these two sister seedlings below:

There are some interesting colors I am getting, even though these below don’t have the typical blotch pattern, they show some of the variation in color and blotch definition. One is an orange/yellow striped hulthemia and the other is a dark pink on pink hulthemia.

Jim Sproul

I especially like the one in the second photo, the blotch is so outstanding. There is quite a perceptible difference to the others you have. Could this be accomplished in double petaled roses rather than just singles?

Thanks Jeanie! Yes, that one is probably the darkest and largest that I have seen on a new baby seeling. That was its first bloom and the plant is very tiny. Without exception in my experience, the blotch always is larger and more intense as the seedlings mature.

Regarding the blotch in roses with more petals. I think that the blotch shows up best with roses having 5 to 15 petals or so. I have had Hulthemias with literally 50 or more petals, but the blotch gets lost.

Below is a photo that I just recently took of a seedling from last year. It is proving to be a good seed parent. I think that the extra row of petals on it may make it more attractive than the singles.

Jim Sproul

Outstanding. That one competes with camellias for form and chrysanthemums for brilliance of color combination.

That is truly beautiful Jim, and the blotch is noticeable with more petals but I can see what you mean if there were anymore than that the blotch would not be easily seen. I just love how the color just fans out from the blotch upon the petal, it really is unique.

Some truly beautiful and unique roses you have developed Jim!


Not to take anything away from your others, but WOW, the last one is absolutely fabulous, Jim. While the singles are nice, the additional petals do give a certain depth to the bloom.

How close are you to commercializing any of your Hulthemias?


Thanks Larry, Jeanie, Terry and Liz for your comments on this last one. It is also one of the larger hulthemia blooms that I have gotten - about 3 inches across. I am using it this year in breeding both as a seed and pollen parent.

Regarding commercialization of these Liz, I am trying to get someone to move on them. I have 10 of the best ones under test - a couple are moving forward, but it is a slow process…

Below are two more brand new 2009 mini hulthemia seedlings. The first is of the bloom on its second day. The color was better on the first day and the petals weren’t reflexing, but at least you can see that it has an unusual coloring.

The next one is a half sister.

I’ll be interested to see what these look like outside as more mature plants.

Jim Sproul


The last two seedlings are quite remarkable! The first one doesn’t even really look like a rose, it’s very unusual and exotic. The salmon pink (coral?) really does it for me big time, it’s such a smooth saturated color, I totally love it!


Wow! They all look great!


M61-1 is indeed quite remarkable. I hope you will at least send a photo to Ralph to see. I’m sure he will be thrilled.

Your perseverance in this breeding line is paying off, Jim. Kudos. I hope the shrub habit is improving as well. I know that is going to be a major hurdle with these hybrids.