Sport Of Granger Sugar Frost

Historically, I have seen some of the chimera cultivars sport with more frequency than others.  One that has always been stable for me, as I have propagated many from stems is Sugar Frost as seen below.

I recently produced 6 plants using a tissue culture stem propagation technique. What was so atypical is that of the 6 plants produced, 3 plants from that batch sported. Initially, those 3 that sported looked perfectly normal as they all grew their first set of leaves with the light green color (standard in Sugar Frost leaves) on both top and bottom (first rosette of leaves) [Leaves “A”].  But on all second rosettes of the 3 that sported the leaves were darker in color on the top and the underside of the leaves, which are normally 100% green, had red blotches [Leaves “B”] on the underside of the leaf.  The next rosette of leaves, the underside was uniformly dark red and the top of the leaf retained the dark green appearance [Leaves “C”].  Images are seen below.

Seeing the red leaf color is totally atypical in Sugar Frost, which indicating to me that the blooms would not be true to the parent plant as reflected in the top image.  Below is an image of the bloom which just opened up.  

As mentioned above, I had 3 such sports all appeared concurrently with the last batch of Sugar Frost that was produced.   Makes we wonder if this was pure coincidence or there was some environmental or chemical stimulus I inadvertently exposed them to that caused this to happen.  The other two plants had flowers and are exactly as the image above. Also, click the following link to see an up to date collection of images I have made of chimeras and the sports they produced. https://chimeraav.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Chimeras Gone Wrong Sports Ver 3.pdf

Ford’s Pinwheel Revisted

About 2 years ago my collection was devastated by a fungus. Of those that survived was a single Ford’s Pinwheel (J. Ford). So I repotted and it grew. It grew like none of the other chimera African violets. Frankly, it did not bloom but sent out suckers like you would not believe. I never saw anything like it. I had over a dozen suckers in 2 months and I started to wonder if the suckers would be true to the parent. The suckers just kept coming instead of the blooms and I just kept repotting them. Finally, the parent plant started blooming as well as the suckers. All the suckers were totally true to the parent plant. In fact, the blooms were large and as chimera African violet blooms do, they will over time fade with age. This is not the case with Ford’s Pinwheel blooms. The blooms actually darken with time as is evident on the image below. The bloom to the right bottom is the oldest (over one month and is the darkest while the youngest (front and center bloom) is the youngest and lightest. I now have an abundance of healthy, blooming true Ford’s Pinwheels ready to be given as gifts, for trading, and for sale come this spring. On this image, I went out of my way with the lighting to make sure I captured the true color and I believe I captured that.

The image above may appear a bit distorted, but click on it and you will get the correct perspective.

Conclusion to Chimera African Violet Shimai Experiment

January of 2018 I posted this blog  Click here.

Then in February, as the stem cultures started to grow I added this Click here.

I am attaching that image posted in February 2018 below.

The Shimai plantlet listed as “B” which was from the stem of a typical green striped Shimai from February 2018 and is now a flowering plant and is below.  As expected it is a normal Shimai.

PLANT B (Above)

The slower growing plantlet listed as “A” in the top image was the stem that produced the bloom as Illustrated here.   The outcome is a bit different then Plant B. 

PLANT A (Above)

The most noticeable difference is the purple strip going through the center green stripe.  If you compare to the original bloom on the variant stem, this bloom lacks the purple edges on the petals but other then that the bloom is the same (plus the photo on Jan 2018 was terrible from bad lighting to focus).  My next step is to select from this plant the flower stems demonstrating the most intense purple green stripe as there is a little variability among the blooms on the plant.  But the plant essentially did bloom true.   If I can selectively produce a bloom with a bit more homogenous purple green stripes and have that produce true to these characteristics, we may have a new sport of Shimai.  All the characteristics of leaf color, texture, size and so forth are identical to the standard Shimai listed as plant B.  The only difference is purple stripes instead of green.   If you click on the images they will enlarge.  More to follow.

 

Yachiyo Tabata


I have grown the chimera African violet, Yachiyo Tabata in the past.  This very robust plant sends off these exceptional blooms of semidouble-single star bloom with pink/purple fantasy streaks with white stripes. This chimera has medium green leaves.  What caught my attention with one of the bloom stalks of the Yachiyo is that the pink edging on the petals was a bit wider and a bit more color intensity than the other Yachiyo Tabata (compare above with below).  So the bloom stalk of the below plant will be removed and cultured.  We shall see if in fact a strain of Yachiyo with a bit more intense pink can be produced.

 

Chimera African Violets Suspended and Protected

As mentioned a number of times, starting in 2014 most of the collection of chimera African violets I had were destroyed by an infection of  Phytophthora.   It was fast and by the time, I identified the issue 75%+ of my plants were destroyed or I needed to destroy them as they were beyond salvaging.  Despite various fungal treatments which proved at best marginally effective until I used Dithane M-45, I had a small number of chimera African violets with plastic bags over them as they were just out of tissue culture and were just starting to root.  The infestation was in two waves over a 2 year period.  Just when I thought the infection was done a second wave hit.  It was to the point that the only plants I was able to salvage were those in the test tubes producing new plants and the Neptune’s Treasure which seemed rather resistant and very resilient along with the few “bagged” plants.  Fast forward 3 years and the collection is healthy, disease free and growing and blooming and many of my previous practice have changed.   But I want to focus on the plants in bags which included Concord, Yakako, Party Fun and Blue Confetti.   They were tiny plants in bags, transferred from a sterile environment, placed in a plastic bag, isolated from insects or air currents that would carry the fungal spores.     The bags were never pulled off the plants for now 3 years.  I recently started doing that.  So as I processed the plant “Party Fun”, I took pictures.  

This plant has been under this bag for 3 years now.  Never flowered.  It has grown from a tiny plantlet produced Dec 2014.  When it was watered (every few months) it was by way of the wick method.

Bag finally removed to reveal a plant with a long weak stem.  The two images above are the same plant just rotated.  

The plant broke nicely into three parts.

I took each of the 3 parts, removed the leaves and then cut the stem to 1/2 of what you see here.

I then placed in a 2 oz plastic cup to get established.  I am hoping in December or January there will be some initial blooms on this plant and hopefully they will be true to the parent.  I will post the outcome regardless.

 

Abnormal Mauna Loa Blooms Again!

Back in Sept of 2016 I wrote this blog.   Exactly 2 years later what do I see, abnormal blooms on the Mauna Loa.  This time they look more normal than the oddly shaped spiked petals.

But in all cases, it looks like a petal is missing.   So why?  Is it the genetics of the specific Mauna Loa I have and I propagate from or is it purely environmental?

I am baffled. You can click on the images to enlarge them.

Chimera African Violet Sweet-Which is really Sweet?

When propagating Chimera African violets, on occasion I notice that the leaf color is different.  100% of the time it is an indication of a sport that will not be true to the parent plant.  In this case, I did stem culture on “Sweet” (one of my favorites) with the goal of producing more “Sweet” chimera African violets. As the plant increased in size the difference in leaf color was observed.  Plant A has a lighter leaf color and Plant B has a darker leaf color.   I am taking this photograph and writing this on 2018/6/23.  As I cannot remember if “Sweet” has darker leaves (I believe it does) or not, I am not certain which will bloom true.  At the time of this writing, both are forming bloom stalks.  I am assuming one will be all pink or all white blooms.  We shall see.  Once the plants bloom I will take some photos and post below.  The takeaway is a change in leaf color is the first indication that the chimera African violet will most likely not be true.  (Click on any of the images to enlarge).

      ************And the results are in!  2018/07/31************   

As is evident in the above images, the light green leaved plant produced pure white flowers, and the darker foliage plant produced the normal chimera Sweet.

 

Neptune’s Treasure and Being a Bad Sport

As we write and talk about “sports” in chimera African violets as being a genetic variant to the parent, I could not resist the title.   On the rare occasion, one of my chimera African violets will sport.  Either the entire plant or a flower stem.  In this case, I have a flower stem sport.  As you see this is Neptune’s Treasure.  The bloom on the right of the below image is normal and was the first to bloom.  But looking at the buds on the second bloom stalk I noticed that it was going to be different.  And sure enough, it was not an acceptable bloom and the stalk had mutated.

If you click on the image below it will enlarge the image so you can see how the typical blue/white pinwheel effect is not clean at all.  With blue in the white, borders not delineated, this is not acceptable.

If you look at the bud “A” of this mutated flower stalk you will see it is darker and you cannot easily make out the white and blue stripes as is illustrated in the last image.

Compare flower bud “B” below with “A” above.  Without the full bloom, you know something is not right with this chimera.  This is the heart of less subtle changes, for example with Concord.  The white margins in some of the commercial offerings of Concord are much smaller than the original “Concord” from years ago.  That is why with chimera African violets, not a plant should be sold, traded or exchanged until the producer knows if, in fact, the bloom is true.  

 

Another Sport of Shimai

These images come from Betty Neuenschwander who is the owner of this sport of Shimai.

No indication of any other color other then the white bloom with the strong green edge.

 

Shimai Sport (Update from March 2017)

Last March I posted a very nice photo on a sport of Shimai.  This is the link to that post.  The above and below photographs are an update that comes from Elizabeth Shaffer.  Now the sport has produced suckers. (below)

It will be most interesting to see if in fact the suckers of this sport demonstrate the same bloom as above.  I suspect it will.

When three generations have demonstrated that the same flower and plant characteristics are consistently maintained (stable) it can be registered with AVSA as a new chimera.  I wonder what Elizabeth will name it?

 

Chimera African Violets on Facebook

As I was look through the web for interesting chimera African violet articles or posts, I stumbled on a facebook group I was unaware of.  Their name is chimera African violet group .  The group was started February 5th 2014 by Дженнер Восемь. When you click on this link,  you will see some of the most amazing photographs of chimera African violets and the number of different ones is stunning.    You do not need to be a member of Facebook to examine all the pictures.  Just click on the link provided above “chimera African violet group”.   One image set I came across was a great side-by-side shot of a Yukako and Shimai.  If you are not aware, Shimai is a sport of Yukako. 

This link is to the page of the above image, just click here.  These are two excellent images.  The author and owner of the images are 傅淑華  

Timelapse From Leaf Cutting to Blooming Plant


One of the best timelapse I have seen on YouTube using African violets as the subject.  It goes from a cutting to rooting the cutting, to plantlets, to bloom.  Make sure you click on “CC” or “Closed Caption” to get added details about what you are  seeing.

Chimera African Violet The Face of Blue Confetti

Take a look at the chimera African violet desktop icon I made (above).  Do you see the face?  Totally unexpected.  Below is the image of the photo that I used to make the desktop icon.  Amazing what one can see that really does not exist.

Also below is a better image of Blue Confetti chimera African violet.  It is really a unique bloom.  Click on the image below to enlarge.

Other images of Blue Confetti can be seen here.

 

Shimai Variant? Part 2-Tissue Culture

I wanted to post a  photo I took of the stem culture from last months blog on the Shimai variant plus the concurrent stem I took of the standard Shimai.

The test tube on the left is the variant  (or the suspected variant) and the tube to the right is the standard Shimai.  You can see the plantlet forming just above the junction of where the leaves of the flower stem meet the flower stem. (You can click on the image to enlarge.) The standard Shimai plantlet appears to be growing far faster and appears rather robust (B) as compared to the first tube where the plantlet is just starting to take shape (A).  But it is very early and we have another 1-2 months in culture and another 5 months in a pot before the plants will be ready to flower and reveal the answer.   We shall see.

Also I found on the web a 7 page summary  on African violets from how they are described, some nomenclature, about soil types best for growing and how to make them, insect pests and on and on.  I think it is one of the most concise and comprehensive summaries out there.Give it a look.  Click Here.  It can also be found on the far right column under “General Educational Information” and at the bottom of that category you will see “~African Violets Missouri Botanical Gardens”.  Just click on it to be taken to the paper.