Monday, 21 March 2016
Geranium flowers on a Christmas tree? Well, I did it this past Christmas! Sure, some of the single blooming ones didn't last long, but the doubles and rosebuds lasted quite a while! I have created some more pages (see links on the right side of this blog) with articles that I have written over the years. I will add more in time if there is interest.
Years ago I used 'Don's Silvapearl, in my hybridizations efforts. I crossed it with 'Ivory Snow' in hopes of creating some variegated seedlings. No luck in making variegated plants, but I did produce this beauty called 'Grainger's Tanya'. Once again, this photo does not do the plant justice, but its a thick growing dwarf with double pink-bluish blooms. I have a lot of people claim that the colour seems to glow and is nearly indescribable as its not really pink nor blue/lavender. I was later told by a very wise lady that 'Ivory Snow' would not make an ideal plant parent as its a fancy leaved sport, and therefore less likely to pass on variegated genes. Oh well...at least this baby was a happy surprise. Last year a lady bought most of stock for her wedding tables! If that's not a passing grade I don't know what is!
Sunday, 20 March 2016
One of the darkest near-black leaved varieties I have bred is called 'Grainger's Dark Vader'. It seems to be a popular variety with the rich foliage and semi-double bright red blooms. Darth Vader did have a red light sabre after all. Who said you cant love star wars and geraniums, right? It was named on May the 4th a few years ago...
When breeding new pelargoniums every hybridizer has characteristics in mind that they are after in producing new varieties. 'Grainger's Aralia' was a happy surprise from breeding 'Jericho' (a tricolour stellar bred by Ian Gillam) and 'Bold Imp'. And while I didn't get any tricolour stellars, I did get this nice dwarf golden leaved plant with double soft pink blooms. This picture does not do it justice, so hopefully I will upload a better one in time.
Spring is here, and despite some really gloomy weather here in Ontario, things are growing well in the greenhouse. It was a mild winter all in all, and my stock has done well.
Saturday, 26 November 2011
I have not updated this blog for a very long time. I apologize for the delay. Work has been very hectic, and the fall transition of the plants was quite the chore. The light gardens had 2 cuttings of each variety started 2 months ago, and I have since moved the duplicates of most varieties into the greenhouse and still need to space out the remainders so they have adequate air space to circulate. I am foolish for keeping certain more vigorous varieties under lights, but as a paranoid gardener, I expect the worst when it comes to the greenhouse.
My crosses from last year are blooming and doing very well. Many will be available next spring if I can multiply them quick enough. There are a few new miniatures and fancy leaved varieties fortunately, and once they are listed and named I will get pictures up for you all to see. I have one microminiature that is perhaps 2 inches tall...after a year!!! It has yet to flower, but its so tiny that I am afraid to clone it in the near future. I have not crossed as many this fall, but a cross of note that has set seed is 'Little John' x 'Mr Henry Cox'. My fingers are crossed with this one.
The Ontario Club met last weekend and it was nice to talk with new members and old members whom I have not had the chance to get to know yet. The next meeting is in February at the TBG, so I will post more information closer to the years end.
Tuesday, 26 July 2011
Monday, 25 July 2011
Here in Southern Ontario we have had one hot, DRY summer so far. The lawns everywhere are yellow, and only the most devoted gardeners have kept their gardens lush through frequent watering. I have let my lawn go dormant which looks sad, but I have not had to cut it in a month! I am also hoping the perennial weeds die, and the "dormant" turf wakes up with a greater resilience and once again becomes a thick green carpet. Ha. Even I dont buy this line. I am in for a lot of work trying to get this lawn back to normal.
Today it has finally rained significantly, and even though I normally hate excessive rainfalls, I am enjoying the break in watering. I think I have stated before that I dont let most of my pelargonium collection get rained one heavily...so last night I tarped, shuffled, and moved trays and trays of plants knowing this storm was coming. It paid off too as the big Ontario show is in a month, and I want some perfect specimens free from any fungal problems. Dont forget to come check out the big show at the Toronto Botanical Gardens this August 21st, 2011.
I have noticed that grasshoppers are much earlier this year, and combined with a dry hot summer this is not good. As I recall, swarming conditions favour this. I cant imagine saving my collections from a swarm of locusts. What a nightmare situation!