Mauna Loa (Eyerdom) is one of my favorites Chimera African violets. Its bloom is described in “First Class” as a single chimera light rose star with a dark red stripe. Based on observations over the years Mauna Loa has a greater propensity to express 6 petals instead of the 5 which is standard with dicots. Dicots express an odd number of petals as 5 or multiples of such, 10, 15, 20 and so on.
Over the last few years I have been trying to stem culture only those stems of Mauna Loa that express 6 blooms. Reality is I do not believe this will really selected out a higher bloom number. It does not make sense to me as I am not selecting out a trait through traditional genetic selection. I have never been able to produce an all 6 petal flower count. But this said from just casual observations I am observing what seems to be more 6 petals per plant, and now even a 7 petal bloom (below). But I need a control Mauna Loa plant that has not been stem cultured to verify this. I never saw a seven (7) petal bloom on Mauna Loa before. I apologize for the quality of the image. I was going to photograph the bloom on the plant and the entire bloom fell off the evening prior so I used a black background instead.