From The President's Desk

 

  The first three months of 2004 have been a very busy period for your Board Members and Webmaster. A number of programs were set in place many of which were or are now being pursued simultaneously. In December of 2003, I instituted a call to review IHS' Statutes and created a committee - the IHS Statutes Committee, consisting of Graham Boytell (Chairman), Dick Johnson, Robert Cook, Wayne Hall and Constantino Garcia Dominguez, to study the current environment as it relates to our charter and determine which areas need updating and or amendment.


INDEX
 

Part 1: From The President|Secretary/Treasurer's Report|Part 5: When And How Do We Pollinate?|Art Imitates Life: Jesse Arms Bolke|The Schneiders: Would You Believe He Makes A Custom Cabinet?|Chronicles of the Mysterious Flower Genie|IMHO: On Hybridizing|Top 16 Picks To Have In A Collection|Mallows Are Bird Favorites|From The Archives: The Breeding of Hibiscus|Part 2: Culture Notes: Hibiscus Down Under|IMHO Continued|Georgia On My Mind!|Mallows Are Bird Favorites Continued|Hibiscus 25-Years Ago - 60.|Hibiscus International No.19 Special Supplement (Land of Gumamelas!)|


 

IHS Statute Amendments And Poll

  Wayne and Constantino were drafted by your Board as members of this committee to represent the general membership. Wayne has since taken over the duties and functions of Richard Mansbridge as Secretary-Treasurer as Richard voluntarily retired for health reasons. The results of this Committee’s work were submitted to the Board as a list of recommendations in the form of additions and/or alterations to the existing Statutes. A copy of the amended Statutes is attached as a separate attachment being part of this issue of Hibis-cus International No.19 in keeping with the current Statutes under:

ARTICLE XIII: AMENDMENTS

Section 1:

The bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of members voting, a minimum of thirty (30) days previous notice having been given. Publication of proposed amend-ments in the next issue of Hibiscus International will normally suffice for such notice.

  As of this writing, a polling facility has been established in IHS’ website for the purpose of allowing all our members to vote for or against ratification of the amended IHS Statutes. I therefore encourage all our members to exercise their power of the vote by actively participating in this poll which will be open for a 30-day period after which the results will be announced by the Board on IHS’ Member eList.

Trimestral Photo Contest (TPC-2004-1)

The TPC-2004-1 was concluded in February 11, 2004. As Moderator of IHS’ TPC Program, Jim Purdie announced the results, as follows:

The top three (3) places in the Seedlings and Miniature Seedlings Categories in the TPC 2004-1 will go into the final vote after the 3 TPC Competitions at the end of the year.

The top 3 places in the Seedlings category are as follows:

First Place: Misfire (x) Smokey Mountain first with 10 votes, entered by Alan & Elaine Little (Left photo below).

Second Place: Tahitian Cherry Blossom 2nd with 7 votes, entered by Richard Johnson (Right photo above).

  There was a tie for Third Place: Tahitian Strawberry Moon (Lower left photo) with 4 votes, entered by Richard Johnson and Tahitian Sunburst (Lower right photo) with 4 votes, also entered by Richard Johnson.

The top 3 places in the Miniature Seedlings category are as follows:

  Tahitian Tamurae (Upper left photo) first with 6 points, entered by Richard Johnson. Bob's Red Ribbon (x) Kelly Dianne (Upper right photo) second with 5 points, entered by Bob Carran.

There was a 4-way tie for third place:

(Photos below, from left to right) Bob's Red Ribbon (x) Scarletia cross with 4 points, entered by Bob Carran; Fang (x) Rumplestiltskin with 4 points, entered by Allan & Elaine Little; Tylene (x) Janys with 4 points, entered by Richard Johnson; and, Flying Tiger with 4 points, entered by Gloria White.

Update On IHS Website Migration To Dr2.net
(Note: The following is a report/update submitted by our Webmaster)

  Because of new additions and features recently incorporated into IHS' website we have found ourselves running out of space with our current web host service provider - Hypermart.net. Hypermart.net charged IHS US$ 215.52 for 12-months but provided only 150mb of web space. This is not enough space to accommodate the growing needs of our website.

  After a long search for a new web host provider I eventually found "dr2.net" and proposed to the Board to migrate our website from Hyper-mart.net to this new web host provider. After period of evaluation, the Board decided to give it a try. Dr2.net also provides additional programming support which Hypermart.net does not have in its package such as: MYSQL, Cpanel, and more. Additionally, in order to upgrade to 200mb of web space using Hypermart.net we would have to pay an additional US$ 108.00. On the other hand, Dr2.net as a web host provider, offers more value for our money. We are getting 300mb of space plus all supports (PHP, MYSQL, Cpanel and a series of scripts) all for only US$ 80.00 a year!.

  Wayne Hall, our new Secretary-Treasurer arranged the subscription payment to dr2.net and the minute he gave me the access info to the new site, I uploaded all the files consisting of around 160mb from Hypermart.net to dr2.net's site. This tied up use of my computer for over 24 hours using only a 56kb modem. A big headache just waiting for files to load up but it got done in any case.

  Once all files were transferred to the new site, I commenced to make some major improvements thereafter. First was the auction script. In the past, we encountered a few minor problems using the old script to get it running right so it needed to be improved. I installed a new script spending several hours debugging it. But after many trials and errors, I had it finally running the way it should. The result is that we now have a new auction section with a much more professional look:

The new Auction Page URLis:
http://atlas.1oftheservers.net/~wayne/auction/

  The second improvement was made on the Genealogy Tree which is located in IHS' The Global Hibiscus Library (TGHL). On that particular section of our website you can click on an image and automatically get detailed information on a cultivar's parents, grandparents, great grand-parents and great- great- grand-parents. The same was done for the search engine. You can now find all these new features using the following URL's:

Genealogy Tree URL:
http://atlas.1oftheservers.net/~wayne/SEArchive/index.php

Search Engine URL:
http://atlas.1oftheservers.net/~wayne/SEArchive/index.php

  Also, in the same location as TGHL a script was written for the Rosa-Sinensis Multiple CV's Page. It now illustrates nine (9) CV's per webpage. This improvement over the old automatically places existing and new CV's in alphabetical order. This was done to eliminate endless hours wasted shuffling back and forth just to replace a few new entries that are ordered alphabetically. Also the new script adds detailed information sourced from a searchable database. In both cases, the jpeg's and database files are taken from one common folder. You can now view this new format in:

Rosa-Sinensis Multiple CV's Page URL:
http://atlas.1oftheservers.net/~wayne/CVsinglepage/index.php

  A slideshow was also added in THGL. It now includes the option to view "all" slides (over 2,350 jpeg's as of date) or view individual jpegs alphabetically. Even more, you can now select from three (3) viewing speeds (slow, medium, fast) or, just view it manually by using the usual forward and backward buttons.

The slideshow's URL is:
http://atlas.1oftheservers.net/~wayne/SEArchive/slide.htm

  Other new updates and additions have been made to the IHS eCard Center. It now has a wide collection of new eCards to choose from even with an option to upload your own or, have it permanently placed by using the "email with attachment" function.

The eCard Center URL is:
http://atlas.1oftheservers.net/~wayne/vcardlite30/upload/

  A guestbook was also added. Any site visitor or member can leave a message and upload their favourite bloom.

The Guestbook URL is:
http://internationalhibiscussociety.dr2.net/guestbook/

  You will also notice that I added a banner on the Home page that offer links to several articles and various other web pages.
Regards to all.
Joseph Dimino
IHS-Webmaster

Valentine's Day Auction 2004

The following were the winning bidders (seed list only) in IHS's recent Valentine's Day Auction 2004:

 

Balanced Plant Nutrition For A Happy Hibiscus Plant

 As Summer approaches in most parts of the world and as the weather warms up in the next few months most hibiscus hybridizers and enthusiasts take the opportunity to re-invigorate their hibiscus plants with some major pruning. Pruning is a signal to a plant that it is time to start new growth if it wants to continue thriving into the next season. But it helps to aid the plant in this natural process by pro-viding proper amount of light water and nutrients in order to do so. Here are some valuable insights for rearing a happy hi-biscus plant.

  There are sixteen (16) essen-tial elements which, when com-bined in appropriately ab-solute ratios, are what a plant needs exactly to stay healthy and produce vigorous growth, well-formed flowers and seedpods. These elements are grouped according to their functions.

  The first or Base Group consists of: Carbon [C]; Hydrogen [H]; Oxygen [O]; and, Chlorine [Cl]. All these four inorganic elements are found naturally in water and also in the air we breathe, free of charge.

  The next group of elements, the Primary, consists of Nitrogen [N], Phos-phorous [P] and Potassium [K]. Nitrogen is the element responsible for inducing new vegetative growth in a plant but must be used in the form of nitrate in order for a plant to successfully convert it to amino acids. Phos-phorous is needed for root formation and development and also is the element which determines the overall robustness or strength of a plant. Potassium induces the production of flowers and fruit (seedpod) production. The relative strengths of each in a feeding formulation all depend on the plant's cycle. Percentage-wise, [N] is increased when new growth is promoted such as after pruning. [P] is highlighted when new growth has peaked and you need to strengthen the mass and hardiness of the plant. [K] is accentuated right before hybridizing season which is usually during the cooler months of the year (Spring and Fall) in the northern and southern latitudes and November to mid-March in geographical regions situated between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn.

   A third group, the Secondary Elements, are known as "converters". These three elements combined are needed to convert an N-P-K feeding mix into food which the plant can readily absorb and use in accordance with the specific functions which each element in the Primary Group is known for. The Secondary Elements are: Magnesium [Mg]; Calcium [Ca]; and, Sulfur [S]. A lack or absence of Secondary Elements in soil results in failure to convert N-P-K in efficient forms used by a plant.

  The fourth and last group are all Micronutrients and are known together as "activators". Activators are needed by the converting elements - Magnesium, Calcium and Sulfur to begin the conversion of N-P-K into food acids and sugars and happens in conjunction with the application of water which starts the chemical reaction. Of course, the right amount of sunshine is needed in the process of synthesizing (i.e., photosynthesis) all these essential elements into something the plant needs or can use. As in humans, a proper diet is im-portant to ensure a long and productive life in hibiscus plants.

Carlos C. Quirino, Jr.
President



Secretary/Treasurer's Report

 

There are a lot of new things in the works since I assumed the duties of Secretary-Treasurer from Richard Mansbridge last month. I would like to personally thank Richard for all his past help as IHS Secretary and Treasurer and in making this transition as smooth as possible.

Thank you Richard Mansbridge from all of us. The IHS Statutes Committee is winding down the work it began several months ago and should soon be posted for the IHS members. Our Webmaster, Joseph Dimino, has been working very hard on the new website that should be available very soon, once all the "bugs" are taken care of. Several new features have been added and we are really looking forward to its release. Joseph spent more than two days transferring data to the new site and working out the bugs. A test run has been published and Joseph is asking for member feedback so these items can be incorporated into the new website.

  The sooner our Webmaster gets the feedback or suggestions the sooner we can make the new site permanent. If you haven't looked at the test site please do so. I think you will find it quite informative. Joseph deserves our thanks and recognition for his untiring efforts that made the IHS Web Site what it is today.

  The Valentine's Month auction, which ended February 28th, netted US$ 308.85 for seeds and Black Pearl items. The IHS PayPal account now stands at US$ 1,406.95. We wish to thank all who participated and helped make the auction a success.

Keep 'Em Green
Wayne C. Hall

 



 

  Obviously the time to pollinate will vary in different localities. In Madang, Papua New Guinea only 5 degrees south of the equator, pollinating was very successful on common cultivars towards the end of the wet monsoon period. The mornings were hot (more than 30 degrees Celsius), humid and often overcast with rain during the afternoon and night. Tropical Queensland would probably be similar, with a good pollination period probably extending into the cooler autumn and winter.

  The best months for successful pollination and seed production in South East Queensland is April, May and also October-November. Days with high humidity and cloud cover are best. A success rate for the two spring and autumn periods should give a pollination success rate of 20%. A higher figure could be expected from 'hot' pollen producers and proven seed setters.

  January-February 2001 was hot and dry in South East Queensland. With abnormal yellowing of leaves, considerable bud drop and few blooms. This applies to the hybrid Hibiscus that have been subjected to some climatic stress, whereas the hardy landscaping varieties thrive. I decided to start to start hybridizing at the beginning of January onwards due to impatience and the challenge to see if seed could be obtained during this less favorable pollinating period. The January rainfall was only 61mm, whereas the average is 142mm. The pollination success rate using crosses not known to be previously recorded was approximately 12%. Successful crosses included:

Morning Glory
(x)
Hot Mustard
Snook
(x)
Hot Mustard
Hot Paprika
(x)
Wallflower
Hot Paprika
(x)
Hot Mustard
Waimea Girl
(x)
Wallflower
Morning Glory
(x)
June's Joy
Persephone
(x)
Hot Mustard

  Unsuccessful crosses included Candy, Kim Ellen and June's Joy as female parents crossed with Hot Mustard. All produced a percentage of good capsules which aborted after 3 weeks - during abnormal hot weather coinciding with an application of fertilizer.

  The first three capsules from Morning Glory (x) Hot Mustard matured in 28 days (1 capsule) and 30 days (2 capsules). This is abnormally quick for S.E. Qld., although maturity time in the tropics is about 30 to 35 days. The capsules began to split open when at the yellow stage and one was still green but fully opened during the course of that one hot day.

  Normal maturity time for capsules is 40 to 90 days or more, especially the April-May pollinations that may mature as late as August. It is probably a survival strategy of the plant to retain the capsules until favorable germinating conditions arrive in the spring. Sometimes the base of the style can rot leaving a pin hole into the tip of long term capsules. When this happens seed may rot or germinate in the capsule or small insects may gain entry. The breeder could consider harvesting the long term green capsules to save the seed.

  Morning Glory is an unusual Hibiscus bloom in that the style remains attached to the capsule after the bloom has withered and fallen away. It may turn green and remain attached to the capsule during its development. Also, the stigma pads in the upright tubular buds are quite visible and accessible one full day before opening. Using a fine artists' brush it is possible to pollinate this variety on the day before opening.

  It was intended to use Pink Radiance as a pollen parent due to its good attributes and abundance of pollen which was dehiscing by 7:30 AM in late February. At this time it was noted that superfine silk-like threads come away from the antlers when picking up pollen with a fine brush. The pollen had germinated prior to dehiscing and the bare visible threads were in fact the pollen tubes. Some were 3 cm long at this time indicating just how quickly a grain of pollen could grow down the style to effect fertilization.

Sexual Reproduction - Flower Production: In order to survive in the wild Hibiscus have had to reproduce sexually. Sexual reproduction results in seeds, which carry genetic traits into the next generation. Variations come about through the different recombinations of chromosomes and genes during the union of gametes. This occurs when the zygote is formed. These variations, no matter how slight, may adapt a species to conditions in a changing environment. Therefore, we will note the variations of Hibiscus in different localities throughout the Indo-Pacific.

  Flowers are specialized for the single purpose of sexual reproduction starting the development that leads to the formation of fruit and seed. Hibiscus flowers are usually large and colorful, but the petals that we admire are not essential parts of the flower. Flowers grow from the flower stalk or pedicel and are sup-ported by the recap-tacle. The outer ring of floral parts are known as the calyx, which protects the rest of the flower in the bud stage and eventually the ova-ry should it develop into a seed-bearing capsule. Inside the ca-lyx, the bud is made up of the corolla con-sisting of 5 petals in a single bloom. In the center of the bloom there are usually two kinds of essential parts directly involved with reproduction. The male part is the stamen made up of the fila-ment with a knobby sac at the end called an anther. The female parts are collectively known as the pistil consisting of 5 stigma pads, the style and ovary. In Hibiscus, the ovules are attached to an axis running through the center of the ovary. (Upper diagram: Parts of a Hibiscus Bloom, Geoff Harvey © 2001.)

  Most writers consider that the pollen grain germinates on the sticky stigma surface and that the stigma pads may only remain receptive for a limited period depending upon weather conditions. I have looked at the style under magnification and noted that it is hollow therefore the pollen grain grows through the stigma pad and down through the hollow to reach an ovule within the ovary.

  It has been reported that some success at increasing the frequency of successful crosses has been attributed to applying various sugar solutions to the stigma surface prior to pollination. The object was to increase the nutrients available to the pollen grain and thus enhance its growth down the style in order to reach the ovules. This was tried at the rate of 10% in an atomizer prior to and after pollination. No increase in seed set was noted, but the sugar attracted unwanted ants and other insects. A change was made to a weak solution of foliar fertilizer plus a wetting agent and so far a positive result is apparent. When more plants and blooms are available an accurate measurement will be made. The sugar should work as it has been trialed successfully. The wetting agent is perhaps preventing the stigma pad from drying out due to sun and wind. Move pots into shady protected localities. And lightly sprinkle if temperature is rising. Blooms on plants in the ground may be tied down to shade them from the sun. Once again use the sprinkler if the morning is hot and dry.



Pollen Formation: Development Of A Pollen Grain Within The Pollen Sac Of An Anther - A cross section of the developing anther displays four chambers. These chambers are called pollen sacs (see upper left illustration). Each pollen sac is filled with cells containing large nuclei. As the anther grows, each of these cells goes through two meiotic divisions, forming a four-celled tetrad. These cells are called microspores. Each one of these microspores eventually becomes a pollen grain. First, each nucleus divides by mitosis to become two nuclei. One is the tube nucleus. The other is a generative nucleus. The wall of the cell thickens to protect the developing pollen grain. As the anther ripens, the wall between the paired pollen sacs disappear. The pollen sacs burst open and the mature pollen grains are ready for dispersal.

Ovule Formation: Development Of An Ovule Within The Ovary At The Base Of The Pistil - While pollen grains are forming in the anthers, there are also changes in the ovary. An ovule starts as a tiny knob on the ovary wall. Each knob contains one cell. The ovule grows away from the wall on the end of a short stalk through which it is nourished. It is completely enclosed except for a tiny pore called a micropyle. The single ovule cell now goes through two meiotic divisions, resulting in four megaspores. One of these survives. This megaspore get larger and turns into an oval embryo sac ( see upper right illustration). More cell division occurs and a polar nucleus is formed in a cell in the center of the embryo sac. This sac goes on developing until it is ready for fertilization. In order for fertilization to take place, a pollen grain must get to a stigma pad of the pistil - pollination.


 

POLLINATION

Pollination is the transfer of pollen from an anther to a stigma. In nature this happens frequently with species Hibiscus, either from the same flower - self-pollination or with two separate plants involved - cross-pollination. The Hibiscus flower beetle, Macroura concolor (Macleary), is definitely an agent in pollination. Australian native hibiscus seem to have an active nectary at the base of the petals and all sorts of insects such as flies and moths are attracted to the blooms, usually in large numbers. Some of our Hibiscus rosa-sinensis cultivars such as Full Moon, Kona and Bruceii are slightly perfumed as well as the cross compatible Hawaiian species e.g., Hibiscus arnottianus. Ants are often attracted to Hibiscus stigma pads and in so doing have to pass through the pollen to reach their destination. The H. rosa-sinensis variety, Ruby Rose (left photo: Carlos C. Quirino, Jr. © 2002), sheds pollen in profusion and this could conceivably be transported by the agency of wind or water. The main strategy employed by Hibiscus is to attract people as pollen dusters/hybridizing agents, thus ensuring their survival in many localities around the world and access to a large gene pool.

  Under normal plant breeding procedure the antlers on the capsule parent would be emasculated with a small pair of scissors to prevent any chance of self-pollination. The petals would be trimmed back and a small plastic cellophane or paper bag fastened over the bloom. This may hold the humidity in and protect from direct sunlight thus preventing the stigma pads from drying out. The main reason though is to eliminate the possibility of foreign pollen reaching the stigmas whilst they are still in the receptive stage.

  Abscission of the developing 'capsule' can be a major problem as mentioned earlier. A smear of 3% indolebutyric acid (IBA) mixed with lanolin or petroleum jelly in equal proportions can be applied to the abscission layer prior to or at the time of pollination. IBA is the normal rooting hormone that we use for Hibiscus cuttings. This certainly does work and will prevent the capsule from dropping. Of course it does not increase fertilization or set seed.

What happens after a pollen grain lands on the surface of the pistil's stigma pads ? First, a chemical from the pistil induces the pollen grain to form a pollen tube that grows into a stigma surface. As the tube gets longer it will grow downwards through the stigma tube within the hollow style. Finally, it reaches the microplye of the ovule a good 5 cm or more from the stigma. If there is insufficient nutrient on the stigma pad the single cell pollen grain may not grow the necessary distance to deliver its sperm nuclei to the ovary. Should the ovary be reached, the generative nucleus moves through the pollen tube. As it does so, it divides and forms two sperm nuclei, or male gametes/ After the pollen tube passes through the micropyle, it digests the part of the embryo sac's thin wall. The tip of the tube breaks open and the two sperms are released into the embryo sac. At this time, the tube nucleus disintegrates.

One of the two sperms unite with the egg in fertilization. This produces the fertilized egg cell called a zygote. The other sperm nucleus unites with the nuclei in the embryo sac to form the endosperm nucleus (see diagram above). At this point, aucins from the pollen grain stimulate cells within the ovule to divide. The zygote develops into an embryo plant. The endosperm nucleus grows into the seed endosperm which contains food for the embryo plant. (Top diagram: Geoff Harvey © 2001)

  If a treated capsule shrivels whilst remaining on the bush we will know that fertilization was unsuccessful. A ripening capsule should be watched to prevent insect damage and accidental loss. It may be necessary to trim the calyx if aphids appear and to get better insecticide coverage.

  Normally, the wanted male and female blooms would need to open on the same day. Pollen can be placed on the female stigma pads one day in advance of opening if the buds are trimmed or forced open. Pollen can be kept for use on the day after dehiscing if kept in a cool dry low light place. According to American hybridizers pollen in a sealed container has been kept refrigerated and used successfully after several days.

Geographical Considerations

  The origin of H. rosa-sinensis is undoubtedly tropical, be it the Malabar Coast of India about 10 to 12 degrees north or Cochin-China 10 to 15 degrees north. H. schizopetalus and H. acetosella (left photo below) come the from tropical east coast of Africa. It is these species, forms and hybrids that flourish throughout the tropics notably Fiji 15 to 20 degrees south, where some species may have developed. The Hawaiian species e.g. H. arnottianus below have contributed considerably to our many horticultural varieties. In Hawaii they are found in their natural habitat at some altitude in cool environments, 20 to 25 degrees north. Hibiscus arnottianus (right photo inset, below) grows to perfection in Sydney and Perth climatic conditions at 34 degrees south and tend to struggle in Brisbane at 27 degrees south. The Mauritius and Madagascar species e.g. H. lilliflorus come from 20 degrees south and also share in the makeup of our modern hybrids. Coastal Sydney grows hybrid Hibiscus very well at 34 degrees south. The leading Hibiscus authority, Mr. Les Beers, considers our modern hybrids to be better suited to the cooler climates rather than the tropics.

  In March of 2001 the following hibiscus cultivars were noted at Narrubri in New South Wales which is 30 degrees south and well inland on the western plains of Australia: Ruby Rose, Cuban Variety (right photo inset, below) Andersonii, Snow Queen and an unidentified double red, They were all large specimens obviously several years old and full of bloom.

  During the long hot summer periods on the Sunshine Coast (100 kilometers north of Brisbane), the strong H. rosa-sinensis forms and H. schizopetalus influence outperforms the hybrids. The hybrids come into their own after the heat of summer. The hybridizing implications are the need to develop Hibiscus for our particular locality. For example, in Cairns at 17 degrees south we would look at different parentage than in Sydney at 34 degrees south. The most outstanding Hibiscus garden that I have observed was a few hundred meters from the sea at Marcoola on the Sunshine Coast. This was Allan McMullen's garden where perhaps the cooling breeze and nutrients from the sea were beneficial to the Hibiscus.

[To Be Continued In Hibiscus International No. 20:
Part 6 - The Mechanics of Hybridizing]



  Nearly a year and a half ago, I attended the Sunrise Chapter of the Ameri-can Hibiscus Society show held at the Mounts Botanical Gardens located in West Palm Beach, Florida. At the time, I was whisked away by Wally Neef and seated with Will Gaudet to clerk for the judges at a table. There were many people working to make the show a success. And succeed, they did. I was shown by Bonnie Orpi from my Chapter, who Gary and Donna Schnei-der were. Names I had heard, but I had never met the couple. It would be almost two years before I got the chance again.

  I attended the 2002 National American Hibiscus Society with several goals in mind. One being, that I would meet the Schneiders. I took the opportunity, by introducing myself to them and asking for an interview. My interview would have to wait for them to pick up a shipment of orchids from World of Orchids in Orlando (Upper left photo: Gary Schneider (left) with Dick Johnson).

  Gary and Donna Schneider got started in hibiscus when they drove down Highway 41 in Punta Gorda, Florida for a show. At this show, they met Harry Goulding and Carl Powell.

  When they saw the flowers that were being grown, the Schneiders made a wish list of what they wanted. The hybridizers did not have any available so they bought two garden varieties instead. The first hybrid hibiscus they bought was Big Apple. The Schneiders joined the Harry Goulding Chapter of the American Hibiscus Society in 1983. Shortly after, they started assembling their collection of hybrids and exhibiting their blooms. Gary and Donna married in 1985. They met on a blind date and the rest is now history. In 1994, they went commercial and now grow 700 varieties. If you ask Gary what his favorite flower is, he will reply that he "likes them all". In the past, they have lost many plants due to irrigation problems but they finally have this problem under control.

  The couple started hybridizing in 1996 and soon with a "field of seedlings" with the help of Harry Goulding and Carl Powell, who told them which plants set seeds. Some of their named varieties are Melon Ball (which placed 4th in the 2002 HOTY competition), Volcano (their first attempt), Lovely Lil, Hot Lil, Mango Madness, Crantastic, Xena, Swan Dance, Thida, Calypso Rhythm, Rose Maui, Peek-A-Boo, Jessica, Fido, Surf's Song, Melonmania, and Fluffer Nutter.

  Gary has held the position of National Director and Show Director. His original occupation was historical restoration and custom woodworking. He worked on making large catamarans but this only side tracked him from his love of the Queen of the Tropics. The couple lives in Bokeelia, Florida and run Pine Island Tropicals.







  Flying high in a magic carpet, the Mysterious Flower Genie rode the heat waves from a mountain filled with molten lava. Out of the heat and steam far below she spied something red and yellow glowing at the edge of the crater.

  The Mysterious Flower Genie flew lower for a closer look and discovered a gem of many colors that had avoided the heat that seared everything in sight. The lovely gem was large and beautiful. The Genie plucked it from the edge of doom and brought it home to live in her Enchanted Garden.

From the chronicles of the Mysterious Flower Genie from the peninsula of Flowers - Volcano.



  Let me begin by first providing my perspective on hybridizing globally and ending with my specific thoughts.

  In general, I see two basic hybridizing trends in the world today:One followed by mass producers of hibiscus and one by smaller operations. For the mass producer (those operations that produce a half million or more of the same variety) the expediency of production and the market they address are the determining factors that guide their hybridizing.

  Hybrids must first and foremost, grow on their own root, a pinch must result in multiple branches (not just 2 or 3), they must reach blooming size in minimum sized pots in a minimum amount of time, they must be compact plants with floriferous upward facing blooms (Left photo: Arcturus (x) Georgia's Pearl Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002) and they must ship well. These hybridizers produce blooms for the spontaneous market, not necessarily the hibis-cus enthusiasts, and as a consequence are in competition with petunias, gerberas, chrysanthemums, etc. - essentially all the pot plants.

  Their market research tells them that the vast majority of buyers want reds (I believe it is about 60%), yellows are second (I believe about 30%) so that leaves only 10% for diverse. Accordingly, the majority of varieties that go through this selection process are small flowered, and by the standards of most of the hibiscus society produced hibiscus enthusiasts, are rather ordinary blooms.

  Of course, to accentuate this goal, such commercial growers almost without exception treat their plants with growth regula-tors.The rest of the propagators essentially try to provide the latest and greatest of the show winning blooms aimed at a mixed market of avid gardeners and hibiscus en-thusiasts (Right photo: Cheo (x) Lady Adele Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002).

  To be competitive they are often more willing to go through extra efforts to produce such plants, meaning the converse of the above, i.e., plants do not have to be grown on their own roots and they may even prefer to graft their plants believing it provides a superior product.

  They don't mind multiple pinching to produce an acceptable bush and are less concerned with the time it takes to produce the finished product or the shipping requirements. They believe that the quality of the product, with emphasize more on the bloom than the bush - although the later is also very important, will better meet the demands of their market (Left photo: Bonnie B (x) Raspberry Swirl Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002).

  Some will be wholesalers doing part of the above, some will be finishers growing the wholesale product to perfection and some will do both. Some hybridize themselves or have done some hybridizing but they often find the demands of their operations take precedence. Many are finding that it is good practice to associate with a hybridizer or several, so that they can offer new and somewhat exclusive offerings to their clientele. (Left photo: Amy Lynn (x) Janys Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002).

  Hence, the creation of the latest and greatest varieties falls on the non mass oriented hybridizer many of which are hobbyists. They are to a degree the driving force which makes hibiscus more and more appealing as the public becomes aware of the diversity of the really stupendous varieties that exist. These people essentially hy-bridize flowers, while the mass commercial operations basic-ally hybridize bushes Some hy-bridizers satisfy the needs of both markets providing varie-ties for the mass market producer and spinning some of the results off to the more specialized hibiscus fancier market. Hence, as a hybridizer, one has to consider what market they are aiming at, and if there is no commercial interest, personal preferences become important (Upper left photo: Critical Mass (x) Coral Passion Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002. Upper right photo: Ed Flory (x) Oliver Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002).

  The guiding principle of hybridizing in general recommends starting with plants that have a maximum number of desirable qualities and crossing only those types. This assures a greater number of progeny with the desired characteristics. Hibiscus rosa-sinensis does provide a somewhat greater or different challenge in that the gene pool is so very diverse, that results are much less predictable than is the case of many plant varieties.

  Accordingly, strictly following the above basic principle obviates the great potential of bringing together the exceptional strong points of otherwise flawed varieties. (Upper left photo: Fiesta (x) Jazz Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002. Upper right photo: Rainbow Christie (x) Jazz Seedling - Richard Johnson © 2002).

(IMHO Is Continued In Hibiscus International No.19, Part 2)





 

  MARVELLOUS MALLOWS is compiled by Colleen Keena from Queensland, Australia, Kristin Yanker-Hansen from California, USA and Marcos Capelini from Săo Paulo, Brazil. Mallows refer to members of the Malvaceae Family. Note: The "W" references in the text refer to material on the web ("W") listed in the "References" section. The "P" references in the text refer to print material listed in the "References" section.

1. INTRODUCTION TO A BIRD-FRIENDLY HIBISCUS GARDEN

  Why would those with a passion for growing hibiscus and hibiscus family plants want to consider attracting birds to their garden? The answer is sim-ple: birds are really very efficient aids to natural pest control (P1).

  Insects may cause serious damage to garden plants and we are all familiar with the ravages of aphids, caterpillars and scale. Attracting birds into the garden may not completely eliminate these pests but will certainly reduce their effect and allow the gardener to keep spray applications to a minimum. (P2)

  In Australia, insects form part of the diet of all native birds (P1) and insects also form a major part of the diet of many birds and in some species make up their entire fare. Insectivorous birds generally have small, weak beaks and large gapes (fleshy corners of the mouth) to enable them to catch insects while in flight (P3). Birds such as robins, silver-eyes, wrens and a number of other quite common birds are primarily insect-eaters and feed on a wide variety of garden creatures, including pests such as aphids and scale (P2).

  Birds such as honeyeaters are essentially nectar eaters, however they supplement their diet with insects, particularly at nesting time when their need for protein is highest. They also feed insects to their young to accelerate their growth rate. The smaller honeyeaters eagerly devour many of the tiny insects within the garden, while larger honeyeaters prefer to feed on larger creatures such as beetles, moths and cicadas.
Even birds which are mainly seed eat-ers, such as finches,
enjoy the occasional insect and pardalotes are especially fond of scale insects (P2). Birds such as butcher-birds, kooka-burras and magpies seek out any grubs, caterpillars and snails crawling on trees and shrubs or at ground level (P1).

 


 

  While Crested Pigeons eat mostly native seeds, they also eat insects. Because one of the authors lives in south-east Queensland, this article will focus on birds that can be found in this author's one acre garden in the Brisbane Valley.

  Two quite different kinds of birds have built nests in Malvaceae plants. A Honeyeater built its nest in Abutilon auritum, a small dense shrub which flowers all year.

  Crested Pigeons built two nests, both in hibiscus plants. One of these nests was built in the centre of a large plant of Hibiscus 'Archerii'.

  The other Crested Pigeon nest was constructed in a large Australian native hibiscus called 'Sunset Glow'.

  Honeyeaters are the most ubiquitous and most characteristic bird family in Australia and in almost any garden in Australia, there will be at least one, and possibly as many as a dozen, visiting honeyeaters (P5). One of the most common in the author's garden is the Noisy Miner which feeds on nectar, fruits and insects. The honeyeater's nest is a cup woven of long thin vegetable material such as grass, needle-like leaves and plant stalks and bound with spider web. The nest is fastened at the rim to the fork of a small branch (P4). (Right photo: A Noisy Miner, one of the larger honey-eaters)

  The Crested Pigeon was once restricted to drier inland regions but has now spread to the coast around large population centres. It becomes confident around human habitation. The nests made by the pigeons are constructed of sticks and twigs and located in the fork of a branch. Crested Pigeons have been known to breed continuously for several months, producing up to seven consecutive broods (P4). (Left photo: Mother and baby Crested Pigeon)

  It is worth reflecting that were it not for the presence of insects, there would be fewer birds to cheer your day (P5). "Not only do birds provide an audio and visual pleasure but their presence helps to control the various insect pests that inevitably appear in a garden" (P2).

2. DEVELOPING A BIRD-FRIENDLY HIBISCUS GARDEN

  There's nothing more enjoyable than watching birds feasting on nectar, insects, fruit and seeds in your garden. Birds can be enticed into your garden by providing the right conditions and a safe environment (W1).

  Birds have four main requirements from the environment: shelter or roosting, nesting sites, food and water. Some trees and shrubs provide for all of the first three of these needs, while others are specialist providers of different parts of the habitat (W2). Growing plants in a range of sizes and types will provide food and shelter for a variety of birds (W3). As different plants flower in different seasons, including a variety of shrubs and trees in your garden is important. A diversity of plants will also encourage a diversity of insects which again encourages lots of insect-eating birds (W1).

  You can increase the pleasure and satisfaction you get from your garden by careful planning and plant selection. You should try, if possible, to create a mixture of over-storey, middle-storey and under-storey using trees, large shrubs, small shrubs, wildflowers and grasses of local species of plants. This combination will attract birds which feed on nectar, insects, fruit and seeds. Dense and prickly shrubs can also be planted to provide protection from predators at ground level. Try to plant some species which flower in winter when food is scarce. Birds are attracted to plantings which create small dense patches of green interfacing with open sunlight (W4).

Shelter or Refuge

  All birds need somewhere to hide in the event of danger from predatory birds, cats or dogs. Providing shrubs and trees at various levels - low, medium and high and especially dense or prickly shrubs and trees, will provide a safe spot for birds to hide and escape. Local species of trees and shrubs will attract the widest range of local species of birds. Birds often flee from predators into low spiky shrubs. Other birds require tall shelter which itself needs more space. All birds require a roost to spend the night or day.

Nesting

  If one has a quiet, secluded garden comparatively free from interference and domestic pets, then birds may be attracted to nest in it. It is important to have food plants and plants which attract insects near the site as small birds must conserve energy while nesting.

  Some birds will create nests in trees and shrubs using twigs, moss and other plant materials. Other birds rely on tree hollows for nesting. Hollows can take a hundred years or more to form in a tree and there are few mature trees in urban areas. An alternative to a tree hollow is a nest box. In early spring, a

Continued In Part 2 of Hibiscus International No. 19





AN INTRODUCTION
By: Ross H. Gast


  Fifty years ago, in his spacious Honolulu garden Alonzo Gartley crossed a native white hibiscus (H. arnottianus) with a red hibiscus from India (H. rosa-sinensis). The result of this interspecific cross was a large single pink, a horti-cultural variety that Gartley named Agnes Galt (left photo: C. Quirino © 2002), for the wife of his friend, John Galt. That this variety is still widely grown, should give pause to some of us modern hibiscus breeders, for how many of our Tricolor winners will be around fifty years from now?

  Alonzo Gartley, whose paper on hibiscus hybridization (reprinted from the "Friend", February 1913) follows, was one of the several Honolulu busi-nessmen who were responsible for establishing the hibiscus hobby in Hawaii. He was not the first, however, Archibald Cleghorn, brother-in-law of King Kamehameha IV and governor of Oahu, is credited with having crossed the native Hawaiian species with H. rosa-sinensis as early as 1872. By the turn of the century interest had greatly increased, to reach a peak during the period 1910-1914. In 1911, a Hibiscus Society was organized, and that year, held its first show at which 2,000 different forms were on display.

One of the earliest hibiscus breeders, Valentine Holt, brought his extensive collection to the Hawaiian Agricultural Experiment Station in 1911, and took a position there as Assistant in Horticulture. The Station report of that year shows that Holt gave out 3,000 hibiscus cuttings to the public, and the following years, 25,000 cuttings were distributed.



  By 1913, the year the article which follows was published, a bulletin on hibis-cus, written by E. V. Wilcox and Valentine Holt was issued by the Station as their Bulletin No. 29, "Ornamental Hibiscus in Hawaii."

  Now long out of print and difficult to secure, it is still the most comprehensive work on hibiscus available. It gives the parentage of, and describes 239 forms, including 33 varieties brought in from Fiji, India, and other parts of the world which with the native Hawaiian whites and reds, were the progenitors of the modern Hawaiian hybrids.

  The earliest crosses were confined to the use of native Hawaiian whites as pod parents, as only a few of the introduced varieties were seeders. Although the forms of H. rosa-sinensis brought in were not truly species, but were the result of hundreds of years of natural change and perhaps some human selection, they were in effect species when crossed with the native species, producing hybrids with great hybrid vigor. This is the case with most interspecific crosses. In addition to Agnes Galt many of the hybrids produced during this period still persist as dooryard and public landscape plantings throughout the world. The double pink Kona, the single pink, Mrs. Lillian Wilder and many others we still see are F-I hybrids with native Hawaiian white as one parent.

  Modern breeders, of course, are interested in show blooms, and to them these forms are primitive. Yet we must all admit that they have been of real horticultural significance in that they are not only the progenitors of modern hibiscus, but because they are still around, useful in landscape plantings wherever tropical hibiscus can be grown.

  Not all of Mr. Gartley's observations are valid today, because his experience was with species and very old types of H. rosa-sinensis, and the laws of heredity as laid down by the Mendelian theory did apply to a great extent. But today, when working with highly complex hybrids, we cannot accept all of his experience.

  Alonzo Gartley was an Industrial engineer, a graduate from the U. S. Naval Academy and in his earlier years an engineering officer in the Navy. He came to Hawaii in 1900, and became manager of the Hawaiian Electric Company, as well as a director in many other firms. He died in 1921.


 

  Visitors to Hawaii and discriminating kamaainas almost without exception agree that the Hibiscus is the most satisfactory and perhaps most generally admired of all our flowering shrubs. The soil and climatic conditions seem especially favorable to its growth, and there seems to be an almost complete immunity from disease. As a result it has been widely used as an ornamental garden shrub and hedge plant, but it has not yet had the extensive planting its' beauty and its utility deserves. An educational campaign is necessary to focus appreciative attention upon perhaps the most valuable asset of Honolulu Beautiful.

  There is an enthusiastic group of men and women in Hawaii who have a full appreciation of this plant, and it is hoped through them that such an educational campaign may be promoted and furthered.

  A hibiscus club has already been formed to promote a better knowledge of the methods of growing hibiscus and producing new varieties, and it is to be hoped that a large membership will result in the production of a great many desirable flowers, and an ultimate wide distribution and planting throughout the city. Such extensive plantings would add so materially to the attractiveness and beauty of our city that there is a possibility of Honolulu being as well known through its hibiscus as Japan is through its cherry blossoms and chrysanthemums. Five or ten acres of park are carefully planted with thousands of varieties of beautiful hibiscus, and brought up to a high state of cultivation, would be one of the botanical wonders of the world (sic).

  Speaking of thousands is speaking advisedly, for, from the twenty or thirty varieties introduced, and the native varieties, three or four years production by cross-pollination has increased the number to over a thousand, and many of the new varieties are vastly superior to the original parents.

  The facility with which these flowers can be cross-pollinated has resulted in most wonderful collections in many of the gardens. Here indeed is a most satisfactory and pleasurable outdoor fad, and one which has apparently limitless practical utility and great scientific interest, for there is no other plant which lends itself more readily to a study of heredity in plant life.

  The simplicity of the methods employed is not generally known, and the possibility of the results to be obtained not realized by the average garden worker. We have therefore undertaken to illustrate some of these methods and the results in such a way that interests may be promoted and the work furthered.

  The hibiscus belongs to the mallow family: which includes the Hawaiian hau, the illima, the large group of mallows, the common vegetable okra, the cotton plant and the Roselle or H. sabdariffa. They are all well worth considering as many of the flowers and plants are very beautiful, and especially is this true of the Hawaiian variety known as H. breckenridgei, which has a rich foliage and a very, velvety yellow flower. The Chinese or Rose of Sinensis varieties, ordinarily grown in the gardens of which the brilliant scarlet and pink flowering hedges are examples, are the ones which from their hardiness and wealth of foliage and flowers have attracted the most attention, and have been brought to the highest state of cultivation. It is from these varieties that the great number of new types has been produced.

  It is not generally known that there are many indigenous varieties of single reds, yellows and whites on Oahu, Kauai, Maui, Molokai and Hawaii. These native varieties are very handsome and some obtain the size of trees, some being over forty feet high with trunks twelve inches in diameter. The sight of such a tree covered with thousands of fragrant flowers, each six or eight inches in diameter, with a stamen ten inches long, will linger in the memory forever.

  The majority of these native varieties produce seed freely, and thus have been continuously propagated in the Hawaiian forests. These native varieties together with some twenty or thirty varieties which have been introduced have been the materials which the local workers have employed.

  To produce seed, a flower is pollinated by covering the stigmata on the end of the stamen with pollen, either from the same flower - when it is spoken of as being self-pollinated - or from another flower, when it is spoken of as being cross-pollinated. Such plants as are reproduced without variation by self-pollinated seeds are called pure-breeds. Those whose self-pollinated seeds produce plants and flowers showing variation from the original self-pollinated plant and flower are hybrids, mixed-breeds or cross-breeds. It can be safely said that all of the Hawaiian varieties are pure breeds. Of the introduced varieties comparatively few produce seed, and these seeds seldom reproduce these varieties true. They are therefore crossbred flowers, the seeds from which will produce a wide variation in the resulting progeny.

  There is no doubt that hibiscus follow very closely, the laws of heredity as laid down and developed by the Mendelian theory, and it is this fact which makes the hibiscus a valuable plant for the scientific worker. (Mendel published his work in 1866 but it was almost completely ignored until about 1900. This article was published in 1913 - Editor, The Friend). As everyone knows, the colors, shape and sizes of the flowers are quite variable, and they are also single, semi-double, and double.

  With this material so rich in variety it is possible to obtain an almost infinite number of new forms. The single ones vary in color from pure white through the entire range of the spectrum down to dark red with the exception of blues and purples. The numbers of doubles, and their colors, however, are much more limited, the extreme limits of the scale being pure canary yellow, and the dark double red. It is necessary for the worker to well establish in his mind the unit character of the different flowers as to size, color, shape, texture and whether single, double or semi-double, and at all times during the breeding to carry in mind these unit characters.

  The worker should previously determine the characters which are desired and should conduct the breeding in such a way as to produce these characters if possible, not endeavoring, however, to unite too many characters in a single flower. Say that a double flower is desired there are three ways of producing this and possibly four.

  Unfortunately we have but two double flowers which produce seed, and both of these are double red, the one being a small dark red known as the Carnation the other a red flower somewhat larger. Cross-pollinating a single flower on either of these doubles should produce a limited number of doubles, but a much greater number of single flowers.

  Cross-pollinating a double flower on either of these doubles will give more satisfactory results, and a larger number of doubles will be produced, but a certain number of single flowers may be expected. Cross-pollinating a double upon a single flower of a seedling variety will also produce a limited number of doubles. It will be noted above that the crosses resulting from doubles with doubles, and doubles with singles, both produce singles. Should these resulting singles seed, or if the pollen of these singles is fertile upon other singles, a very limited number of the resulting progeny may be double.

  This seems remarkable, but if we recall that the unit or genetic character of doubleness is possessed by these flowers, the resulting doubles in the progeny of these flowers may be explained.

  In regard to changing the form, we have a variety called "Coral" (H. Schizopetalus) which resembles a delicate piece of pink coral and is illustrated at "B" in Figure 1. (We regret that it is impossible to reproduce the pictures from the source of material we have. We have changed the wording a little so that you will understand what Mr. Gartley is referring to in the pictures. - Ed.) Flowers "A" (shows a double) and "C" (shows a fringed single like Dainty or La France) of Figure I are the result of cross-pollinating with "B" (the Coral hibiscus); "A" (the double) resulted from crossing the coral hibiscus on what is known as Red Carnation, and "C" (the fringed single), resulted from crossing Coral on a single hibiscus.

  It will be readily noted that the dark colors of the female parent have been retained, but that both in the double and the single crosses the resulting flowers show a marked fringing of the edges of the petals. It is therefore possible to obtain fringed flowers, both single and double, through the medium of the Coral flower "B". Further study of heredity would indicate that if the pollen from "A" and "C" should prove fertile that either of these flowers may be used in further crossing to produce fringed flowers, insomuch as both of them have this genetic character derived from the original parent "B". A single fringed white flower resembling as nearly as possible the Coral in shape is one of the future possibilities, and is being, earnestly worked for.

  As to breeding for color a great deal yet remains to be known. The majority of crosses between the whites and yellows and the whites and reds has resulted in pink flowers of all shades; thus the results show no resemblance to either parent, and it is almost beyond belief that a dark red flower, when crossed on pure white, should produce a shell pink, and that a pure dark yellow when crossed on pure white should entirely lose its yellow character, resulting likewise in a shell pink colored f lower. Yet, this is the case.

  The first generation cross resulting in a hybrid, and these flowers frequently do not reproduce seed. Either they cannot be fertilized themselves or their pollen is not fertile on other flowers. A few of these, however, do seed, and by self-pollinating these flowers, the original colors, yellow and red, of the parents may be reproduced, and the size, texture and shape probably greatly improved. These flowers can also be cross-pollinated with the pollen of another flower possessing desirable characters, and thus almost any character desired may be separated out and bred into a new flower.

  It is true of almost all heredity, that the strong characters are the ones which dominate in the resulting cross, thus a handsome flower upon a bush with poor foliage may be bred into an inferior flower on a bush with strong rich foliage, and the character of a large flower and strong rich foliage be the result. The advanced workers are endeavoring to produce a large double white flower resembling in character the well known Peachblow, but without the color. This will probably be produced from a self-fertilized, single hybrid, resulting from a cross between a pure white and a large double f lower.

  Perhaps only those observers and those who have worked upon these flowers would notice the seed pod on the hibiscus. Figure II illustrates such a pod. The flower illustrated in this cut is also very unique both in color and in shape. The color is a brilliant salmon orange, and the center is marked with deep claret and pure white. It will be noticed also that instead of the usual pistil tube surmounted with pollen and stigmata, the end of the pistil tube of this flower has developed a number of petals, thus marking it as a semi-double. The stigmata and pollen are present, however, and the flower admits of self and cross-pollination. Curious to relate, however, that in nearly every instance where flowers have been produced from this plant, through self or cross pollination, the results have been large, single, scarlet flowers of great brilliancy, and of velvety crepe like texture, varying in every particular widely from the parent.

  Figure III (not available) shows a very handsome cross-bred flower, resulting from a pure white single and a near magenta single. This is known as the Cecilia Knudson, and produced by Mrs. C. H. Rice of Kauai. The color is a delicate pink with almost a black center. The flower is large in size and the foliage a rich glossy green. It illustrates very characteristically both the foliage and the form of many of the hibiscus, and is given as an illustration of one of our superior varieties. It shows clearly the stamen with the stigmata and the pollen. The pollen cells, however, have not yet broken, and they frequently do not break until late in the day. This flower also has characters which have been introduced into many other crosses, viz: that of remaining open from two to three days, instead of shutting up on the evening of the first day - and possesses a very delicate fragrance. Both of these characters were inherited from the pure white parent.

   Now, as to the actual method of procedure in cross-pollinating - the flowers which produce seed in the majority of cases are susceptible to self-pollination. It is therefore necessary to remove all pollen from the stamen of the flower to be worked upon, preferably before the pollen cells break. The pollen from the flower to be used for fertilization is then placed on the stigmata. Results are more certain when pollination is done in the morning. At the time of pollination a tag marked with the names of the parents should be tied to the flower stem for reference.

  About six weeks should mature the seed if fertilization has been complete, and the resulting seed pod will contain from one to seventy-five seeds. When ripe these seeds should be picked and planted in seed boxes, and about a month after sprouting each individual plant should be planted in a four inch pot, and transplanted from time to time Into five, six, or eight inch pots, and finally into the ground.

  The worker can find no more fascinating occupation than following the growth and ultimate fruiting of these plants. Many leaf variations will be evident from the time the plant becomes large enough to show its leaves, and the budding and opening of the bud gives much pleasurable expectation. There still remains the pleasure of giving favorite flowers the name of favored ladies.

  All those who have already undertaken the work are very enthusiastic, and as has been mentioned above, there are no doubt twelve or fifteen hundred varieties now in Honolulu. Many of these will be rejected, and perhaps two or three hundred of the most desirable ones retained. Further and continued crossing will produce many more desirable varieties, and if the number of workers is increased and the desirable kinds systematically collected and planted, many thousands would ultimately result.

  To summarize: A great number of workers should endeavor to obtain as many handsome flowers as possible, and freely distribute these flowers, especially in private gardens. From five to ten acres of park area should be set aside, cultivated and planted with hibiscus of selected varieties.

  A large growing exhibit of hibiscus should be planted in San Francisco at the Hawaiian exhibit in 1915. This exhibit could be placed in charge of the Hawaiian Federal Experiment Station under the immediate direction of Valentine Holt, who has produced perhaps more crosses than any one in Honolulu.

Other Articles and Photo Gallery Section are found in Part 2 of this Issue of Hibiscus International No.19




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