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True to type from seed

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True to type from seed

Post  bwaynef on 8/22/2012, 12:57 pm

I planted a few pepper plants this spring: Giant marconi, Yellow Bell, and Red Bell. I'm almost certain they were (at least distributed) by Bonnie.

Does anyone know (or better yet, have experience) if they'll reproduce true to type from seed?

(I have the same question about Sweet 100 tomatoes, though I'm not familiar with their provenance.)

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  camprn on 8/22/2012, 1:08 pm

If they are hybrids, most likely next years fruits will not be the same as what you grew this year. That being said, you will still have peppers, if the seed is viable.

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  bwaynef on 8/22/2012, 1:49 pm

Am I to assume that these are Hybrids then? What are the chances that they'll be red/yellow respectively?

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  camprn on 8/22/2012, 2:22 pm

I usually rely on the adage, 'Never assume anything'. Look up the varieties to determine if they are hybrids. Usually if peppers stay on the plant long enough they will turn a color other than green.

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  Squat_Johnson on 8/22/2012, 4:04 pm

For what it's worth... I saved seeds on a couple of Bonnie Hybrid peppers and a Bonnie tomato. They turned out good, and I am now growing their 5th generation. This was before I was on this forum and had any sense. I got lucky I guess.

I have since seen some Hybrid tomato seeds that I saved are not true. My luck ran out...

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  littlejo on 8/22/2012, 8:25 pm

You could call them or just go there and ask, they have gardens/greenhouses in lots of places. Near to you in Spartanburg, SC.

You could ask where they get their seed, and if they are hybrids. It would be interesting to know but some of the stores use another nursery down here.
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Re: True to type from seed

Post  CharlesB on 8/23/2012, 7:33 am

Sweet 100 is a hybrid, the others probably are as well.

Shouldn't stop you from trying though. If you have a variety you really like of any of those you can always grow some out in pots next year and see what you get. Esp. the peppers, I doubt the Sweet 100 would be worth the time and effort it would take to breed a standardized Sweet 100 line when there are so many other good heirloom cherry tomatoes already available.

My hybrid pepper plants really out produce my heirloom pepper plants. Likely a combination of hybrid vigor and good parent selection of the breeders. Can get expensive buying good hybrid pepper starts though. I plan on starting with more heirloom pepper plants next year then using their seeds. Should get hybrid vigor out of those and some nice surprises in terms of variety.


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Re: True to type from seed

Post  bwaynef on 8/23/2012, 8:33 am

@CharlesB wrote:Sweet 100 is a hybrid, the others probably are as well.

... I doubt the Sweet 100 would be worth the time and effort it would take to breed a standardized Sweet 100 line when there are so many other good heirloom cherry tomatoes already available.

Interesting that you say that. I found out that the tomatoes I have are F1 (if I'm using the term correctly: these are plants grown from seeds of Sweet 100s, first generation, right?) Sweet 100s. My dad got some from my (crazy) Uncle. The plants are COVERED in little cherry tomatoes that are the sweetest I've ever tasted. Peculiarly, upon getting loads of these tomatoes, my 3 year old son declared that he doesn't like tomatoes anymore and I'm left to eat them myself. I'll manage.

Regardless, I'll keep the seeds from these tomatoes and see what I get out of them. I don't plan on doing any breeding or selecting ...but I'll grow (and eat) whatever these produce and if they're much different than the tomatoes I'm eating now, I guess I'll seek out actual Sweet 100s. (All that said, I'll also take recommendations of high-producing excellent tasting heirloom cherry tomatoes.)


My hybrid pepper plants really out produce my heirloom pepper plants. Likely a combination of hybrid vigor and good parent selection of the breeders. Can get expensive buying good hybrid pepper starts though. I plan on starting with more heirloom pepper plants next year then using their seeds. Should get hybrid vigor out of those and some nice surprises in terms of variety.

What do you mean when you say you "should get hybrid vigor" having started with heirloom peppers after saying that hybrids out-produce the heirlooms?

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  CharlesB on 8/23/2012, 1:18 pm

@bwaynef wrote:What do you mean when you say you "should get hybrid vigor" having started with heirloom peppers after saying that hybrids out-produce the heirlooms?

More than you want to know about hybrid vigor :-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heterosis

You can skip to the "In plants" and "Corn" section for the good parts.

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  bwaynef on 8/23/2012, 3:08 pm

So, you start with heirloom peppers (for instance) next year ...and take your lumps (smaller harvest), to save the seeds that they produce ...that have been pollinated by, among others, the hybrids that you'll have around.

Having new genetic data (compared to a tried-and-true strain of heirloom peppers) from the OP between the heirloom & hybrid will hopefully/likely yield "hybrid vigor" in the resulting seedlings?

^^
Am I getting this right?

How do you ensure that you get the same quality/flavor from the heirlooms once you're growing the F1 seedlings?

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  CharlesB on 8/24/2012, 9:43 am

There are many factors that go in to what one wants to grow. Much more than just yield. I don't put much value in total yield. I grow a few plants that I know are monster yielders but > 95% of the other plants I grow are for other reasons.

For growing a lot of peppers my plan was to grow a bunch of heirloom peppers at one of my community gardens and use the seeds from this for the next year. Most of these seeds will not be crosses, or F1's or hybrids. They will simply be the same variety as they will polinate themselves. If doing this I will grow all heirlooms at that plot and not mix in any hybrids.

I don't mean to make this sound complicated. I like the experimentation of it and if I try something that fails miserably I chalk it up to lesson learned and move on.

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  rowena___. on 8/24/2012, 9:54 am

@bwaynef wrote:
Interesting that you say that. I found out that the tomatoes I have are F1 (if I'm using the term correctly: these are plants grown from seeds of Sweet 100s, first generation, right?)

no, F1 means they are "filial 1", the first generation of a cross between distinctly different parental types.

most of the valued heirlooms are not wild seed, they are cultivars. they are the result of intentional selection of best examples to propagate.

"true to seed" is kind of along the same lines as "true to size" in patternmaking (which is my other area of study). "true" depends on what you use for a standard. in the case of a seed, it means that a hybrid goes back to its origins. this is the seed's truth, regardless of our human desires. Smile

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  GWN on 8/24/2012, 10:15 am

Just a slight bit off topic, I grew 3 hybrid pepper types last year, and they totally cross pollinated, and some plants had a total mishmash of colours.
It was a real shame because one type, a purple one, I did not like much and somehow there were purple peppers on all the plants.
This year I have stuck to two heirlooms to keep things clean and no crosses.
I am just learning some of this stuff too.

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  bwaynef on 8/24/2012, 1:00 pm

@CharlesB wrote:
...grow a bunch of heirloom peppers at one of my community gardens and use the seeds from this for the next year. Most of these seeds will not be crosses, or F1's or hybrids. They will simply be the same variety as they will polinate themselves."

Then how does that induce "Hybrid Vigor" or Heterosis?

Rowena wrote:no, F1 means they are "filial 1", the first generation of a cross between distinctly different parental types.

It would be a mistake for me to assume that the only variety of tomato that my (crazy) uncle grew were Sweet 100s. Wouldn't the seeds from the (known) Sweet 100 tomatoes likely have been pollinated by other tomatoes ...thereby growing into something that couldn't realistically be referred to as Sweet 100?

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  Turan on 8/24/2012, 1:12 pm

@bwaynef wrote:

It would be a mistake for me to assume that the only variety of tomato that my (crazy) uncle grew were Sweet 100s. Wouldn't the seeds from the (known) Sweet 100 tomatoes likely have been pollinated by other tomatoes ...thereby growing into something that couldn't realistically be referred to as Sweet 100?

Generally speaking tomatoes are self pollinating. Not 100% but close enough generally. Pollinator made a good suggestion in another thread about looking at the flower carefully to see if the stigma sticks out past the anthers to see how likely out crossing is. http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t13622-rookie-topic-heirlooms-vs-hybrids

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  Turan on 8/24/2012, 1:15 pm

A great website full of information on this I just found. It has a good picture to illustrate about the stigma also.

I n t e r n a t i o n a l S e e d S a v i n g I n s t i t u t e <~~Click Link

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  rowena___. on 8/24/2012, 1:34 pm

@Turan wrote:
@bwaynef wrote:

It would be a mistake for me to assume that the only variety of tomato that my (crazy) uncle grew were Sweet 100s. Wouldn't the seeds from the (known) Sweet 100 tomatoes likely have been pollinated by other tomatoes ...thereby growing into something that couldn't realistically be referred to as Sweet 100?

Generally speaking tomatoes are self pollinating.

this is partly correct, the tomato plant has what is called a perfect flower, meaning that it has both male and female structures within a single blossom. it is self-fertile, which means it can pollinate itself and does not require an additional plant of its type in order to reproduce. but it requires the help of wind or vibration of insects to cause the pollen to drop from the male to the female structures. thus, it is possible to sequester or quarantine the first flowers on a tomato plant in order to prevent them from contamination, and yet have them produce viable fruit.

tomatoes can and do cross-pollinate but that is rare without help, because the pollen doesn't usually travel beyond its own flower cluster. buzzing insects often carry it but if a blossom has already fertilized itself, no additional pollen will affect it, and the presence of a buzzing bee is enough to cause a tomato flower to self-fertilize.

it is certainly possible to pollinate tomatoes by hand, but really all it takes is just a mild shake of the plant, rather than the transfer of pollen from blossom to blossom as is done with plants that produce distinct male and female flowers.

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Re: True to type from seed

Post  bwaynef on 9/3/2012, 1:49 pm

@bwaynef wrote:I planted a few pepper plants this spring: Giant marconi, Yellow Bell, and Red Bell. I'm almost certain they were (at least distributed) by Bonnie.

Does anyone know (or better yet, have experience) if they'll reproduce true to type from seed?

I found a website learning about tomatoes that would suggest that the marconis can be grown from seed:
http://www.rodgersheirlooms.com/plants-for-2012.html You'll have to search, but its there.

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