Informal Survey of the Membership

Hello all,

Just taking an informal survey of the membership for an upcoming talk.

How did you get interested in hybridizing roses?

Why do you hybridize roses?

How long have you hybridized roses?

Are you currently extracting embryos via embryo culture?

Comments for/against embryo culturing?


Hi Andy, it might interest you to read Joseph’s earlier post about why we breed roses.

I raised my first seedlings nearly thirty years ago. I created my first seed not quite that long ago. Once I learned how easily they could be germinated, I embarked on making my own to see “what if…?”

I don’t extract embryos. I do find it a bit interesting. I wonder how successful it will turn out to be in the long run. It’s an interesting experiment, but as with many things, though interesting that it can be done, not necessarily something which is beneficial to do. Kim

Hello Andy. I got interested in breeding roses after a trip to Provincetown, MA in 1990. I saw the rugosa roses blooming on the beaches and took hips home to try to grow my own. In addition to wanting to create new varieties with all of the excitement that comes with that, my hope is to create at least one variety that will exist, long after I’m gone. One that other breeders would find significant enough to use in their own breeding programs. I don’t have children so leaving a legacy through roses is a strong driver of my efforts. If it turns out that I don’t succeed in that endeavor, I will have had lots of fun while doing it. I figure that at 55 years of age I have another 40 or so years to give it a real good shot. I guess it’s been 22 years that I’ve been at this with a break of 4-5 years from about 2002-2007. Significant life changes got in my way but I found my way back.

I am not currently extracting embryos via embryo culture but this may be my first year at giving that a shot. I have some seeds from much hoped for crosses that aren’t germinating and may decide to try embryo rescue. What have I got to lose, right? I think embryo rescue could be another tool in the box for us to use in our efforts. I can’t think of any reasons against it off the top of my head.

Currently due to restrictions on garden size, I’m focusing on miniatures. My goal is to bring better disease resistance and winter hardiness to the miniature class. I would like to see miniatures gain more acceptance in landscaping.

Started 30 yrs ago. Back then, conventional wisdom was “hybridizing is done in california, not in ohio”, which was incentive to do it in ohio. Henry Kuska was inspirational in this regard, even pre rha, pre intrrnet when others’ activities were mostly unknown.

First cross produced a couple good seedlings, one of which remains in garden.

It has faults, but so did the hundreds of commercial vars grown over the years.

Growing many vars is important for a hybridizer, so he can evaluate what is quality and what is junk.

Our goal is simply to produce plants we enjoy, most based on Dr Buck’s work.

No intention to reinvent wheel using species. No intention to use emb extraction, as there are already way too many seedlings.

I got started breeding plants in early high school or late middle school. That was when I first tried growing rose seed with almost no information to go on it failed misably. That was probably about 1995 or some where in there. After that breif experiment I concentrated on other plant. Then about seven to eight years ago I was looking for something to breed since my conditions had changed and I was unable to continue the work I was doing with other plants. I happen to come across roses again. Haven’t had much success yet but every year I am gaining ground.

As far as extracting embryos I have tried it. Mostly when I crack the seed coat I also damage the embryo. Also after that I have had problems getting th te embryo to grow. But I have gotten a few to grow. I do think there is value when in the process when you are using one parent that will not set seed and the other parent will not germinate. But for the most part I want to avoid the need for the process because it takes time and more practise than I am willing to go through. I have for the past few years experimented with extracting some op seed that I did not care about at the end of the season. Just in case one day I needed to use it with roses or some other plant to get plants out of a cross. But for the most part I want to avoid actually needing it. I think most things one wants to do with roses can be done either with paitence or decided on a different route to do the same thing. A type of embryo culture has revolutionized the lily industry lately. For years people have wanted to get certain species or species group to cross and have failed. However a techinique similar to waht you are talking about but more complicated has been used with great success. It has not made everything in the lily industry crossable but it does make many things that where on islands by themselves crossable for the first time. It has not influenced many fields of breeding but only a few. Probably has not been tried with most. With roses I do not see it creating such a big impact. I see it more as a minor tool in one tool kit. I think this because roses surprisiling unlike many plants freely cross species better. Even at times ignoring ploidy levels. With paitence most crosses can be done I believe.

If this means what I think it means Comments for/against embryo culturing? than I answered it above. If you are asking wheither its morally wrong than my answer would be no. But when it comes to such issues I am more open I guess. Like for example when it comes to GMOs I would say it would depend what you are using it for. If your pupose was to help feed the word by boasting the viatmin content of say rice I would say it morally acceptable as long as you study it a good deal before you release it but when they say they are adding genes to make pesticides I question the safety of the whole thing. So if you are asking if it morally accpetable I say embryo culture is no more unaccpetable than hybridizing or even simple selection of the best of whats in your feild.

I started growing plants from seeds probably 60 years ago with my father, then got more intensive with my grandfather. But I didn’t grow roses from seed until around college when I actually wrote to some professional rose breeders for advice. I picked it up again about 1980, and did crosses a year or two later. I went large-scale pretty quick, as you can see by my review of germination studies from back then. Took a few years break and started in again this century, now that kids are out of the house and in their own.

I don’t have the patience for embryo culture. I tried meristem culture for rapid plant multiplication in the early-mid 1980s.and didn’t get anywhere. Decided there’s enough to do, the old fashioned way. It would let us get round some bottlenecks, but seems like a slow way forward if lots of back crosses and selection is needed. Would be fine to germinate a recalcitrant species perhaps, but I wouldn’t want to do it for a thousand seeds myself. But I know people can dissect the salivary glands out of 1000 aphids and stay sane. Just a matter of finding someone with the right personality.

As I am about as old as Larry I began growing plants some 60 years ago and first rose contact was when my ball broke the frail only survivor of my father T buding atempts.

Later as an horticulture student at Loire valley, an easy for roses climate, I realized how much are related desease resistance and autumn performance.

I began rose hybridizing some 30 years ago. The florist ones I was growing.

After a pause 15 years ago I restarted breeding for desease resistance.

And as I like challenge looking for higher than KO desease tolerance from suckering species.

I do not embryo culture. Not that I am against it or genetic manipulation.

Just as I cannot do everything and rather like to play with high numbers.

By the way, Pierre, I’d like to visit you if I ever make it to France. It seems like you are the only person here who is really pursuing horizontal resistance by means of population breeding. I find that very interesting.

I started about five or seven years ago when a horticulturist friend told me about giving rose seeds a cold treatment prior to make them germinate. I tried a bunch of open pollinated seeds of Winnipeg Parks. My first cross that I can remember is Morden Blush x William Baffin. I still remember the first blossom.

I am now obsessed with all of the fun and possibilities. My main goal is to create roses that are just plain tough, with a nice shrubby shape.

I’ve never tried embryo culture, but would never speak against it. Chances are I’ll try it. I like the idea of working with Prairie Peace, and if I have to use her as a seed parent for some reason I’d try embryo culture.

Hi Andy!

I do not consider myself a hybridizer since I have yet to create anything - yet. However, I have been a lover of roses all my life. I am fortunate enough now to start my trek due to the recent purchase of property that has enough room to accommodate my aspirations.

My goal is to exclusively work with the T’s – disease resistant and especially colors that have not been introduced. I will be using the ARS method of hybridizing which I found on their website, along with the tips found here on this site.

I am not educated enough to comment on the embryo approach but I am fascinated by what I am reading here thus far. However, I will say I am partial to the “old fashion” way of using pollen when working with roses.

How did you get interested in hybridizing roses?

I do not recall. I have been around agriculture and wildlife, then horticulture soon after, for all of my life. It is one huge blur, now. I do know that hybridizing filled the niche that I needed from leaving the world of exhibiting. It all seems like a natural progression, especially given the temperament that gets bored easily. I take mental breaks from the practice, but I am always eager to progress at it year after year.

Why do you hybridize roses?

I love to create and share. It is what drives me. Even my home is decorated to make everyone feel comfortable. I see aesthetics as a way to create atmosphere and choice for everyone.

How long have you hybridized roses?

Over a decade. I cannot place a number.

Are you currently extracting embryos via embryo culture?

No. I can see the merits to the process and to other people, but it does not really fit my habits.

Comments for/against embryo culturing?

None. I am neutral.

I was raised up in Papua New Guinea into a family of planters (coconuts) where I had a great passion for growing things. I use to do all the trialing of new crops (Cocoa and Pepper) for the family at the age of 14, with extensive propagating area’s which I organised. When I came down to Australia for holidays , my grandfather and I would spend hours in the garden and he was a rose buff.

Did Ag Science at one of the Agricultural colleges here in Oz and later followed this up with tissue culture which I did at a Horticultural college here in Melbourne.

I have n’t been breeding roses for very long , but have 133 registered cultivars and around 500 being trialed in open plots out of town.My breeding evolves around theses

1/ Vigour - which I find very important

2/ Repeat flowering

3/ Health.

I am not overly fussed with bloom form as any cultivar bred producing large numbers of blooms, form will be lost in the mas of colour. A famous Australian breeder said this once ( I grow roses for the garden not the show bench) and it is my belief as well.

With Embryo culture, looking at threads posted on this site, results seem to be a bit of hit and miss. If a rose was that valuable in its reasons for being bred, I would exract the embryo and put it in tissue culture which would be a sure bet. As I do not have anything that valuable I choose to germinate the old fashioned way.

How did you get interested in hybridizing roses? My interest in roses is probably almost as old as I am. I am among the individuals who have always loved growing things-it seems instinctual. My father had a couple of roses that at the approximate peak bloom, would be decimated by ‘June Beetles’. I loved the fragrance of that old rose, strong sweet and probably Damask. So, each time I moved to a home that I knew I would be staying for a few yrs., I planted a half dozen new and different types, and this led to my exploring some of the differences in various types of roses. When I started to look at what was I going to do to keep occupied when I retired, I kept focusing on roses.

Why do you hybridize roses? When I first started, I only had the intention of ‘making some roses’. But it was fascinating, and just any results was not good enough. The obvious outcome of ‘need to do something about better disease resistance’ was one of the first realizations about working with roses. I am quite allergic to pesticides, and really liked how some seedlings had much better resistance than others. And some seemed resistant to everything, at least in relation to what was problematic where I lived. But so many just succumbed to whatever was in the air. If I had to pick the most important outcomes in hybridizing, it would have to be #1.) disease resistance. #2.) ability to bloom freely. #3.) overall vigor and #4.) fragrance-a rose is so much more of a rose if it is fragrant.

How long have you hybridized roses? I started 5 yrs ago when I looked at something to do when I retired. I would not have had the time before that.

Are you currently extracting embryos via embryo culture? No, but It is interesting. I have not found it necessary but can see circumstances where it might.

Comments for/against embryo culturing? If it is necessary, or at least helps, and one has the skill and patience required to pursue embryo extraction, by all means go for it. I think it seems best used in instances where seeds take yrs. to germinate or when germination might be iffy because of some incompatibility but might otherwise thrive.