Pampering seedlings...

For the most part–

A LOT of seedlings die on me. I only have a handful of roses that I keep, and I’m quite happy with a few of them.


There are seedlings that haven’t died… but never found their stride.

I’m talking about my two surviving Livin’ Easy X Robusta seedlings, and two Pacific Serenade X Rugelda seedlings.

After so long, they have never got more than 4 inches. They’re very disease prone, but still…

I keep them.

Because I feel I may have the only Robusta offspring that isn’t Robusta, Pink Robusta, Rugelda, or Keith’s Delight. It’s another step on another tagent.

One of them I already know how it looks. A Robusta copy cat but more orangey in color. Like Ole, or Fragrant Cloud.

The other never bloomed.

I can’t bring myself to tossing them away. I felt that once these seedlings come on their own, they maybe spectacular.

Does anyone have the same problem?

Having something that they believe is special, but it’s poor in every aspect?

I’m looking for people to graft them on rootstock in hopes that this may improve their chances in every way.

Ive had some like that. I give them time, and if they dont improve, they become part of the wonderful process known as composting.

lol I have a Gemini x Freedom for 3 years straight before culling it. It was a whopping 6 inches tall. It was cute, but I needed the room.

These seedlings were from 2005, so it’s disheartening that they’re only a few inches tall.

I’m not sure if it’s the soil, water, environment, or anything else.

I’m trying to see if there’s anybody who could propogate them for me on rootstock. I’m so determined to keep them alive because I think it’s only a hurdle right now.

Yeah, it is hard to cull. Sometimes I save something marginal if I feel it’s a step in the right direction.

Many seedlings never prosper and then I’ve had those that grew to be monsters but refused to bloom.

I had some pretty plants of Sympathie of Falstaff for a long, long time. Nice foliage…no blooms! I later read that this was common of the red austin lineage =(

They also became compost.

Absolutely, Enrique, your post could have been written word for word by me.

I have a seedling from Angel Face that has the most gorgeous bloom. I say “bloom” because that’s about what I get per year. One bloom. It is about 6" tall and 3 years old. I’d never cull it. Why? Beats me. I guess I figure she deserves to live giving me that one beautiful bloom per year. Or maybe I think she’ll hit her stride eventually. Anyway, making it thru the seedling stage is hard enough. She deserves to live. :slight_smile:

Enrique, I have had several Rugelda seedlings that lack vigor. I love Rugelda, but these did not equal any kind of improvement, so as Jadae says became “compost” for the next cycle of life…

I do think that important break throughs should be kept, but only to carry the work to further steps. Many intermediates are not good plants or good bloomers. But if they are infertile, I don’t think that I would keep them, unless perhaps they are fragrant like Judith’s seedling!

Jim Sproul

I’m patiently waiting for Henry’s Rugelda x R15 to flower. Though I got buds late in the season, one managed to put on about 2’ of growth before shutting down for Winter. It’s very vigorous. It did not go deciduous. I bent it over so it will initiate flower buds along the length of the cane.

I had several similar self pollinated Angel Face seedlings that lacked vigor Jude. Yes, they occasionally produce a glorious fragrant flower but I eventually gave em the boot.

Since I know that Rugelda has fertility, I’m not so worried about losing them. I’m would, however, feel disappointed because it seems that one of the Pacific Serenade X Rugleda seedling is thornless.

The most important ones I believe are the Livin’ Easy X Robusta seedlings because I think they are on a different tagent from which other breeders could use.

In any case,

At least we know that Robusta is fertile (albiet, very low.)

I had OP Robusta seedlings in the past, and even had one germination 2 months ago. It’s still growing, but the other two germinations died during the summer heat when I was in Mexico. I planted them the day I left… it would had been better to leave them in the bag until I came back because my family never water my seedlings when I’m gone.

I still have a dozen seeds left, all over a year old by now.

All I can say is it’s a darned good thing most of the seedlings die on their own. I’d be in major trouble otherwise.

In anycase, could you possibly cull this seedling even though it lacks vigor?

lol, yes, I HAVE and DID! It’s a dead ringer for the ones I tossed out. As you describe. They don’t have enough vigor.

NEXT!! =)

I forgot to mention that long ago Ralph Moore warned me that Angel Face is better as a pollen parent. He said most seedlings would be weak as seed parent and of course he was right.

There are some nice cultivars bred using Angel Face as seed parent but they are the exception when considering how successfully it has been utilized for pollen.

Well, you’re a stronger man than I am Mr. R. I could never cull a rose this beautiful, even with only one bloom per year! Kinda like an orchid, lol

I forgot to mention that long ago Ralph Moore warned me that Angel Face is better as a pollen parent. He said most seedlings would be weak as seed parent and of course he was right.

I noticed this year that the germination for the seeds I have where angel face was the seed parent was, how shall we say? Not good. But, you live you learn. Of course I wish I had learned this somewhat EARLIER, but none the less.