William Baffin sport progeny different from Baffin itself?

Hi Everybody,

I just discovered this forum. I’ve got the rose breeding bug and it’s really fun to read all of your observations. If this post works I want to make another post with my Zone 3 breeding observations so far.

But for now a question.

I have a soft pink sport of William Baffin. Does anyone know the likelihood of that trait passing on to its descendants? A retired corn geneticist told me that it might be a surface mutation that doesn’t affect the genetics of the pollen and seed.

Hi Joe!

That is great!!! ‘William Baffin’ sure is a staple in cold regions!! I hope you protect and propagate that sport so the rest of us can hopefully someday enjoy it.

That is a great point your friend shared with you. The meristem or growing point of roses and most plants have 3 layers of cells. The uppermost layer is called Layer I and divides and gives rise to the epidermis and some other outer cells of tissues. Layer II, next in, gives rise to much of the inner stem and leaf tissue. Importantly for breeding, it gives rise to the sex cells that transmit genetic material to the next generation. Layer III gives rise to even more inner tissues. If you rip a petal carefully you’ll see the anthocyanin pigment is in the outer layer only typically. If the change only occurred in Layer I then you would not have that available for the sex cells to transmit to the next generation.

In a study colleagues and I did with different races of black spot we compared susceptibility/ resistance between Knock Out and its sport Blushing Knock Out. In the end with the black spot data and that Blushing Knock Out frequently sports back to Knock Out, we proposed that Blushing Knock Out is a sport that only occurred in Layer I of the meristem altering both black spot race specific resistance to a single race and also color. The reversions back to Knock Out from BKO have regained both the deeper color in the outermost layer of cells as well as the resistance to that particular race.

Take Care,


Thanks, David!

I will post a picture of the sport once a few more blossoms open–I raided them all for pollen yesterday.

I’d love to come down and see your roses sometime. Likewise it would be great to have you visit if you get up in this area.

From what you’ve said it sounds unlikely that the sport’s descendants will differ in color from those of the original. It’s very interesting that not only color but disease resistance was altered by the sport.

Take care,


This past year Corn Hill Nursery introduced a pale pink sport of William Baffin, Lucy Irene. As I understand it, Corn Hill made quite a few plants–which sold very quickly. People like a kinder, gentler color than Wm Baffin’s.

Joe, I think you’d get a lot from joining RHA. You can do it all by email if you have or get a PayPal account. A lot of us are interested in breeding for cold-hardiness and disease resistance.


Link: www.cornhillnursery.com/retail/roses/hybrid/lucyirene.html

Any sports I have attempted to use in breeding did not pass on the sport trait(s) to their offspring. I think the mutations rarely go further than layer 1, and so they are not transmissible.

‘William Baffin’ not a “kind, gentle” color? laughter

This is my first post as well.

I decided to try breeding again after a twelve-year layoff and noticed that I, too, have a sport of William Baffin that looks identical to Lucy Irene. It appeared on a short lateral so it will be a while before I have enough material to propagate with.

How does one join the RHA using Paypal?

Link: skydrive.live.com/?cid=42183793BEF73640&id=42183793BEF73640!110&sc=photos#cid=42183793BEF73640&id=42183793BEF73640!105&sc=photos

You can use PayPal to join RHA just by emailing Larry Peterson ( lpeterso(at)stny(dot)rr(dot)com ). He’ll let you know what to do.

Congratulations! That is a far more useful color than William’s original one! I grew it here and liked the plant. The color was “difficult” to get anyone to look at twice. Kim

This is real interesting! Of the L1/2/3 layers David is referring to, do normal rose petals have all three layers in their cellular structure?

Hi George!

Yes, petals as modified leaves should have cells within them that have developed from all three layers of the growing point as they continued to divide and differentiate.

Hi Joe!!

What part of NW MN are you? It would be wonderful to meet someday and see each others roses. I collaborate with Randy Nelson in Moorhead on the Earth-Kind trials and Eric Castle in Crookston and made a trip up there last summer, but unfortunately don’t have a trip planned for this summer up there at the moment. I will go to Crookston in October I think to be with and mentor the horticulture students from River Falls, WI as we go up there for the regional horticulture meetings for undergraduates.

Take Care,


Hi David!!

Thank you for explaining. Take care also.


David -

I think I’ve met you in Morris at the Fun Day a few years back when you were giving a talk on the Mammoth Mums.

Joe Bergeson

Fertile, MN


If you use WB in crosses use it as the pollen parent. It doesn

Hi Joe! Welcome to the forum! So which retired maize geneticist were you talking to? It wouldn’t be Wild Bill Sheridan by any chance?

Paul is absolutely correct about WB. The leaf spot disease for me varies from year to year and this year it looks like it will be bad. It definitely passes on good winter hardiness, but unfortunately the color range is pretty limited. The most interesting seedling color wise was from a cross involving Morden Sunrise.

Good luck with your crosses and congratulations on your sport, Liz

Thanks, Liz and Paul. This forum is awesome.

Yep, it was Wild Bill, although I haven’t yet known him by that moniker. I’m lucky that he and his friend Jan come to visit regularly.

MS x WB seems like a lot of fun. I’ve almost given up on Morden Sunrise as a seed parent because of that whole two years to germinate thing, but in that cross it seems I’d have no choice.

I guess my thing with WB is trying to get a cross that doesn’t have the lankiness. WB can be excused because of it’s extreme hardiness…it seems to fill in and make a nice shrub. But if I cross it with a less hardy rose for a result that is crown hardy like the Mordens then I want a compact habit.

I have a Knock Out x WB that is fairly nice. I was assuming rock solid disease resistance from that cross, but from what I’ve read here people are pretty down on KO and as you say WB isn’t as resistant as I thought.

I also have several Morden Fireglow x WB seedlings that ended up more red than I expected…not rosy red.

There is an unknown seedling in the field that appears to be of Baffin heritage. It has soft yellow centers and soft pink petals. Quite hardy, but no repeat bloom.

I am frustrated these days… I have tons of gardens left to plant and all I really want to do is pollinate roses and look at my seedlings!

You’re addicted! LOL

Welcome aboard,

Jim on the East Coast

Tell me about being addicted. A while back my lap top met its maker and the worst part was not being able to read the forum. I do countless things online but reading your guys post is one of the best part of my day. I am so glad I got a computer again so I follow whats going on.

Hi Joe!!

I remember meeting you!! I wish the email function was up and running so I can email you directly. Mine is my last name at rocketmail dot com.