Friday, December 27, 2013

Does anything count more than bud count?

Streptocarpus 'Cape Essence'

Story # 124, Part VIII,

            Does anything count more than bud count?

            The way to get big flower power is either big flowers or with many small flowers.

            Bud count in Streptocarpus is genetically variable.  You can get from 1 to 24+ flowers per spike (peduncle).  Buds are formed in pairs up the stem in succession. 

            Because we know that high bud count is possible, there is no reason to release hybrids that don’t have a reasonable amount (2-4, 4-6).

            The trade-off is flower size which can compensate for lower bud count.  Stem strength and length are variable too but we don’t pay much attention to it.  S. ‘Mary Sakamoto’ is one where the huge flowers are too heavy for the stems, requiring staking. 

            Sometimes you may have a flower with color, shape or size that must be saved.  But the variety should not be release with a bud count of one.

            High bud count is genetically possible so we should move in that direction.

                                       Streptocarpus 'Mary Sakamoto'

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