Sprekelia howardii

320083817243-0001@t-online.de 320083817243-0001@t-online.de
Wed, 28 Jun 2006 05:19:34 PDT
Dear Doug,

It is frustrating to have only one bulb that does not offset or set seed.  For 
stimulating seed set in normally self sterile plants I read an interesting 
article that said that some plants can be stimulated to accept their own pollen 
if the stigma is stimulated otherwise, in this case with cement powder. I have 
never tried this but apparently it works. Another method mentioned is to use 
pollen from another related plant AND the own pollen at the same time. Some of 
the seedlings will then of course be of hybrid origin but some may be true 
species self pollinations. The foreign pollen stimulates the stigma and "by 
error" it then also accepts the own pollen. It is best to use a plant as 
pollinator that is as distinctly different from your plant as possible in order 
to be able to recognise the hybrid offspring as soon as possible from the 
species one. It is quite theoretical and I have never tried this myself but the 
source was reliable but concerning Catus hybridisation. Nothing can be lost 
this way, though.
To force a bulb to make offsets it needs to destroy the growing centre. Would 
you be happy to do this? I would not with my one and only bulb. Perhaps cut it 
into two halves with a sharp knife and grow both parts on.... but this may be 
too risky, too. 
Is there nobody with another bulb/another clone of the same species that can 
send you pollen? Or borrow you the bulb for a season and share the seed? I am 
sorry, I cannot, I have a good form of S.formosissima but not the new species.

greetings from Germany, Uli

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