Low pressure systems and germinating rose seeds

Hi everybody,

I am finding that quite a few of my seeds that would not germinate when they were expected to in January and February are now germinating like crazy. I left them outside last week when we had a low pressure system come through just for an experiment and I have many seedlings popping up now. I spent the last two days potting them up. The low pressure system that I mentioned came up from the south and I found that it was very humid right before the storm so I think that means the pressure was dropping fast., this might account for the many germinations I believe, has anyone else used this method or had this experience happen?

This year, my overall % germ has been pitiful, like 12%; maybe they should all be set outside.

This year, my overall % germ has been pitiful, like 12%; maybe they should all be set outside.

I’ve discovered seeds germinating in compost the year after they were discarded. Putting seeds outside definitely helps, regardless of the weather. In my zone, mass germinations happen in the fridge around mid-March. I put R. virginiana seeds outside about a month ago hoping for a miracle since they refused to germinate in the fridge & wouldn’t cooperate after they were taken out.

The only trouble with putting seeds outside, I’ve found, is that birds target them…

I haven’t had any of the seeds I set outside in a fit of hopelessness sprout, but last fall a bunch of them sprouted in the reusable soil bin. They never really grew, though.

But yeah, I agree wiwth Dave, this has been a disappointing year for germination.

So far, I am looking at about 2200 seedlings from the 2008 crosses. Germination drops off dramatically around this time so I don’t expect any sudden surges of activity. 2200 is less than half of my average. Usually I get one seedling per pollination made, so I should be seeing around 5000 seedlings this year. The reason, I think, is simply that I attempted a number of “iffy” crosses in '08 and the fertility of several of these crosses was questionable.

For example, this is the first time I have used ‘Violette’ for anything more than a few pollinations. I pollinated hundreds of blooms with ‘Violette’ pollen and I have about 35 seedlings for the trouble. Thats just the way it goes. Last year I made a cross on Moore’s Wichurana 0-47-19 and got one seedling out of about 700 hundred seeds, and that seedling died before Fall. Some crosses just don’t amount to anything. Last Spring I invested a lot of time pollinating ‘Arthur Bell’ with ‘Abraham Darby’ and I got several hundred seeds. Out of all these, I have one seedling.

So, I attribute my lower than average yield to making crosses that were destined to be poor germinators, nothing more. However, I will say that it seemed to take at least 2 weeks longer than usual to see germination start with any kind of determination. No idea why; all other factors were as usual.


Paul, I commiserate.

To tell the truth I never look at other’s germination numbers because many of the crosses I do are of such mixed ploidy that coming up with a just a few seedlings is to be expected.

This said I’ve begun to work out some of the bugs and rates are getting better to they point that I’m going to have to get rid of many of the things I’ve been holding onto. It’s a shame I won’t be able to explore them.

The hardest part is over.

I am always shocked to see how easy main stream roses are to hybridize. They breed like rabbits.

My surprise complete failure of the year is Dornroschen x (Rugelda x R15).

Dornroschen has always been one of my easiest seed parents. I’m amazed not to get a single germination and had quite a bit of seed, for me.

I have a couple of roses I can count on to breed with almost anything and produce a lot of seedlings that germinate early and mature fast: ‘Condoleezza’ and my own “Penny-trad”. The latter is especially willing to breed and it often passes on good color and shrub habit.

But I agree that sometimes its the really unconventional “long shots” that are what really count. Breaking new ground is usually difficult, but often very rewarding. As you said yourself, where would we be without ‘Muriel’?

Link: www.helpmefind.com/rose/pl.php?n=74603

Isn’t it great to have a seed parent you feel you can rely upon?

As for ‘Muriel’, yes, it’s a miracle rose. That said, I was aghast to find signs of Powdery Mildew on mine this year.

I’ve been discouraged to find propensity to PM in many of my ‘Muriel’ descendants. I guess now we know why.

‘Muriel’ has been neither Mildew nor Blackspot resistant in my experience. With ‘Guinee’ as a parent, I wouldn’t expect any better.


It is very tricky to get that right combination to have seeds germinate, the right temperature, humidity has to be present but not too much, low pressure system as I mentioned, and make sure the seed is right side up…or maybe it’s facing downward, sideways with seam down?? who knows.,…then again mix them all up without labels and just toss them in the dirt and you will most likely get plenty of germs…


True enough, throwing them all in a pot and ignoring them will probably work the best!


The curious thing this year is that my deliberate crosses germinated only fitfully, but open-pollinated seeds sprouted like mad. I’ve got “Fa’s Marbled Moss,” “Nightmoss,” “La Belle Suntane” and “Tuscany Superb” OP seedlings in quantity, but the FMM x Nuits de Young, and FMM x Song of the Stars, for which I had so much hope, never sprouted.

Oh well…

Hi Fa,

Sorry to hear about your crosses not germinating, but don’t give up on them, I have beeen hearing that people are having seeds germinate 2-3 years after they are harvest.

Your open pollinated seedlings sound interesting, La Belle Suntane is a really nice single.

I finally have germinations of the R virginiana seeds. The first one popped up in the pot outside & there are several sprouts in the bag left behind on the counter as a control. The seeds were bagged for the fridge in mid December. I guess they just need warmth & some patience