Latecomer germinations

Hello to all!
The literature states that seeds from the same batch that are allowed to need more germination cycles for maximizing the yield often produce better seedlings in a later germination period.(next cycle) It is therefore advisable not to discard the charges too quickly. I have followed this advice for several times and cannot confirm this recommendation. In my opinion, the first germinations of a batch, independent of the gene mix, usually produce the most interesting, varied and vigorous seedlings. Even isolated stragglers, shorttermed after the first germinations of chinablood mixtures in midsummer or early fall, were for me little spectaculair and grew much weaker than their predecessors. What kind of experience have you had? I very much like to hear your opinion. Many thanks!


I never retain seed flats from one season to the next due to room and something Ralph Moore shared with me several decades ago. I’d read of British breeders saving the flats for future germinations and he responded that is was his observation and belief that the seedlings which germinated the first season were most likely to be the more dwarf, repeat-flowering types (which was what he as primarily focused on). He said later season germinations tended to be once-flowering with potential greater “Arctic hardiness” which wasn’t anything he sought from the crosses he made. He had room (six acres) and time (seven decades) to explore all of it and those were his observations. I have never had anywhere near that kind of room and his rose breeding career still exceeds my total life span to date, so I haven’t bothered attempting to prove nor disprove what he said.


The seeds from successful germinations l’ve had could fill a thimble to overflowing - number of fails, half a 77 l garbage bag.

But what l noticed after cycling at least 4-5 times between 0C and 4C then ambient is if a cross is going to fire it does barrage and thats it. No matter how many more wringing cycles.

However barrage initiation can take up to 4-5 cycles (R nutkana x pp and hazeldean (think 3) before it happened.

My successes from the thimble are mainly hardy species and tenders x species, F1 hardies and more complex semi hardy.

Should add for completion, a statistical outlier fact that there were only 2 germinations from a 5 th cycle, and they were a tender x tender, and tender x hardy (Merveille x Bill Reid, and Merveille x Porsilinikuntor).

Latter young one showing more of the hardy traits of the pollen parent, brown canes and no “thorny” character.


I sometimes saved seed flats for a second year, and I don’t recall ever getting any seedlings from year 2 that were worth keeping, so I stopped doing that. If your intent is to generate varieties that make further breeding easy, selecting from year 2 germinators may introduce undesirable traits, such as a disinclination to germinate easily and quickly.
I see no reason to save seeds that don’t germinate in the first few months from sowing. Many of the best hybrids I got were from the earliest to germinate. These often have the best health and vigor.


Many thanks for reply! Your statement coincides exactly the experiences so far. I will save my efforts in the future.

I don’t have the years of experience or huge number of seedlings that maybe others have had, but my experience has been a bit different. For example, this month I saw the first bloom of a 2021 cross that is one of my best on a very healthy plant that has shed off fungus all summer as it’s been growing.


I would like to show a four-week-old seedling, one of the last germinations of 36 achenes from the cross 2022 R.foliolosa X R.rugosa ‘Rubra’. Most of them germinated already in January - February 2023. In September there were a few stragglers that were weak and not decent, and this new seedling seems to be the last one now. Most of the germinations from the beginning of the year 2023 were vigorous and
quite similar in growth and leaf structure. The influence of R. rugosa is clearly visible through the dominant rugosed leaves and strong spination.The selected ones did not bloom this year, but the last and youngest seedling (pls see picture) is the only one that is different. It has inherited the typical linear, oblonged foliage of R. foliolosa, but also the rugose character.The leaflets are dull and the canes are red, less prickles. Basically an interesting mixture.
You may remember that Basye’s Purple Rose has the same inheritance. I like the Basye’s Purple very much, but would like to see a better fertility. For this reason I have followed up this bloodline again. A small side effect for me is the insight that it might be sometimes better not to discard achenes too early. I will report how the seedling develops further and whether it is a repeater.


Interesting foliage! Congratulations!

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