Some flowers on a given plant have more or fewer petals and different coloration. The cause doesn’t seem to be cultural–that is, different amounts of sun on that flower, nor different amounts of water on the petal, nor insect damage. Is the genome of two flowers on the same plant identical or would it be wise for me to take pollen only from the best flowers on the plant?
Also, I have three plants of what were ordered as and labeled as Oso Easy Italian Ice. They’re in nearly identical pots adjacent to each other. Yet they’re each quite different. One has larger flowers with a few more petals and the plant is vigorous. One has smaller darker yellow flowers. One has too-light-colored small flowers.Culture is essentially identical. Yet it’s hard to believe they’re mislabeled. The leaves, plant habit, disease resistance, thorns and rachis are identical across the plants. I did, if I recall, order them separately. Is it possible that the mother plants are different cultivars?
I’m getting more variability. On one plant, the flower is bright yellow with red edges, on another, it’s like the picture you send–various forms of pink and yellow blend. It is a wonderful rose in the garden–healthy, covered with well-formed 15-petal flowers of those beautiful colors you see in the picture, that rounded patio-size plant habit and glossy foliage in the picture, is reported to be hardy to zone 4a( min temp -25 to -30) plus produces good stuff as a female.
Identical twins are often not exactly identical. In plants, cuttings (or buds) from a single specimen may produce plants that are not exactly identical. Some of the variations can be perpetuated, and even enhanced by repeated selection.
The paper by Breese, et al. is of particular interest. They set out to learn whether perennial ryegrass could be improved (or harmed) by vegetative selection. Yes and no. Old strains that had been vegetatively propagated in the field for many years did not respond to selection. Seedlings, however, did respond somewhat. Second generation seedlings responded even more. The paper suggests that vegetative selection should be started early, before a seedling gets “set in its ways”.
It is worth noting that some roses respond strongly, while others (e.g., Radiance) are stubbornly excellent. Despite mass propagation, Radiance refused to degenerate, and could not be improved beyond its natural state. This may be a result of line-breeding rather than continuous out-crossing.
Very helpful. I will now, in taking pollen, take only from the best plant and, what the hell, the best individual flowers on the plant. Now seeing this year’s seedlings bloom, I continue to be impressed with Oso Easy Italian Ice as a female. I’ll be back-crossing onto it the pollen from the best seedings it has produced. I mix pollen to ensure an ample supply of fresh stuff and mainly to avoid the hassle of labeling and record keeping. My pollen mix now includes what’s fresh from among my 2 best Oso Easy Italian Ice seedlings, Rainbow’s End, Red Sunblaze, and an unnamed Por LaMar pot plant of 30+ velvety red petals of fine form–long lasting.