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Messages - Steve1

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Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: Yesterday at 08:45:46 PM »
Fantastic Steve. Wouldnt mind some of your rain, only had 18mm this year so far.

Richard, I'd be happy to swap you some of the 200 odd mm of rain from the last month for some sun and heat? It's weird when you get a long stretches of 17-20'c in Feb. I hear its pretty droughty in NZ, particularly Auckland - is that right?

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-02-18, 03:39:02 PM »
First flower, 13íc this morning after 50mm of rain. Not to mention the wind.

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-02-17, 05:39:57 AM »

I've not heard of the elevation or Tuber theory before only that daylength and hormones play a big part. also stressing the plant to near death sometimes works with other species. That said whwoz i'm trellising mine for convienience and will try a method used in fruit trees were they bend the branch at 45 deg or even downward to accumulate more hormones.


i can now report i have my first flower buds but on the northern star. the other varieties show no signs yet.

Going to Muirs n sons Monday and will be checking out "biostimulants" at the very least it "seems" cysteine and zinc play a big role in flowering. need to check if this is just hype

Cheers :D

Is that a grafted one Fon??

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-02-15, 05:20:07 AM »
Looking good Fon.

Giving the elevation promotes flowering theory a good test this year, have extended the mesh the full width of the SP bed, but I am wondering if the crazy season we are having is working against me here.

From what I understand whwoz, hormones are a large part of the puzzle - which is why big SP breeding programs graft to ornamental flowering morning glory species. The flipside to this is genetic load or the accumultion of deleterious mutations (which are really part and parcel of clonal vegetative crops and in one paper I read referred to as part of the domestication process of clonal crops) that that affect the ability of the plant to flower - perhaps by inhibiting these hormones.
The third question is does growing from slips affect hormone production and flowering. I have considered doing a study comparing slip vs tuber plants and flowering over multiple years to nut this out. It's interesting at least on the surface that the NZ SP's that have flowered so much more than ours have been overwintered as house plants and also likely well advanced in terms of maturity. And finally there is the environment. Heat is likely to have a role here - perhaps in hormone production too.
My ornamental SP has buds that are getting bigger but none I can see on any other variety, but here we have had cool weather, lots of fog and rain. The Solanum potatoes are doing well though...
These are just my thoughts, I'd be keen to hear any others...

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-02-05, 08:55:18 PM »
Thinking that I will just refer to them as Japanese green leaf and Japanese Purple leaf for now.  The roots will have the final say.
Fair enough whwoz. Again sorry. I looked up the list i sent with the package, as I had a picture and I packed Japanese right before Northern Star. For extra confusion, the green Northern Star appears to have started heart shaped and gone palmate. This is also evident on the picture i took when i collected the slips - where the newest leaves were looking palmate. The heart shape leaf business on some varieties may just be juvenile foliage.

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-02-02, 06:42:43 PM »
Steve1, I have a problem with the SP you sent labelled as Japanese SP.  Two plants were received and they are showing different growth patterns, leaves on one are green, the other has Purple new growths.   Any idea as too which is the true Japanese variety

The green leafed version may have a bud forming

Whwoz, had a chat with Fon last night whilst looking through my SP patch. None of mine look like that green one of yours. That, could be due to differing environmental conditions though. But I did supply two sorts of Northern Star and green and purplish one. One of the two Northern Star varieties may have been mislabeled in the nursery when I got the slips. Could you go eyeball your Northern Star and see if you have two sorts?

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-02-01, 05:17:31 AM »
Hi whwoz, ok so the Japanese variety from my reference picture is the one with the purple new growth - which matches what I have in the garden here. I'm going to have to have a look and see what the options are for that green palmate leaf tomorrow. Seems to be no anthocyanin on the stem or leaf from your picture. Is the new growth green as well? Apologies if I have mixed them up.

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-01-31, 04:36:32 AM »
As discussed earlier, a couple of pics of varieties from Fon, purple tip / white flesh with distinctive purple new growth, and yellow fleshed. Both these sat in pots quite a while due to other priorities - but in the ground now. Looked at my Ornamental purple "Blackie" and it had a bud on it this morning. Kumera, Wanmun and Okinawan are my largest plants - but no sign of other flowers yet. 

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-01-26, 05:32:08 AM »
Steve, pics of the white sweet potato. Has purple bases to the petiole, and purple venation on the under surface.

Thanks Gregg. I'll go and eyeball the Japanese in the morning and take a picture and and post. I found my plant of purple tip/white flesh and as mentioned has distinct purple new growth and heart shaped leaves. I'll try and post that too.
Whwoz, for the record both Solomon and Wanmun came to me from Fon.
Fon, I watched about 35 min of the video from the North Carolina Uni guy, and realized all the ornamental SP are all from them too. I think I have located 3 more ornamental types in two different places in Oz. I'll see if I can get hold of them for next year.
I like the trellis whwoz. Looks good. At least we have one SP going to flower...

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-01-24, 04:23:56 AM »
that looks different to the "American white" and "Purple tip white flesh" i have. will be interesting to see what it is.

Here in Victoria tuber formation starts around Christmas so be prepared to over winter the plant indoors if it dosn't tuber up this late in the season.

If u have a greenhouse that may help.

Fon, can you post some pics of the purple tip/white flesh that I have from you please? As you say definately different to American White. There may be a few of us telling partners we have some lovely new house plants this winter... Do they flower? Sometimes...

Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-01-21, 06:43:06 PM »
Thanks Fon, I'll surely be up for some of that rootstock. I just struck some cuttings from my big white tuber i got from the chinese grocer. Took forever to sprout, even after i picked one with little sprouts emerging when i purchased. Will be interesting to see how it grows over the rest of the season.

And that's an interesting thought ImGrimmer.

Gregg, can you post a picture of the leaf shape / plant? I think the only all white I have is American White, very vigorous all green leaves. Commercial starch variety in the USA.


Sweet Potatoes / Re: Breeding Sweet Potato in Australia
« on: 2020-01-20, 04:52:19 AM »
Nice work Karl. That graft looks good. 
The Japanese paper I read some time ago used Ipomea nil and said "The sweetpotato scions form flower buds in 3 weeks after grafting and continue to  flower for more than 2 months." (Link below)
I did find a local source for I. nil, but havent yet bought any seeds. Any elite carnea material would be great mate.
Reed, one of the secrets to grafting is a sharp grafting knife. The most important thing is to get the cambium layer of graft and stock to align or match up on at least one side so that it can knit together. Get a bunch of stuff together and have at it. I haven't grafted SP, but I'm guessing keeping the humidity up might be useful while the graft takes - Karl, what did you do post graft?
I went to take some pictures of my patch today but we had fog... Not exactly SP weather.


Plant Breeding / Re: Climate Change Breeding
« on: 2019-12-30, 01:23:15 PM »
If you dont have dark enough coloured skin melanin levels you will get burnt.  There are links between the use of sunscreen and skin cancer which is why I never use it, but never letting myself get burnt in spring is the key, now its summer i spend all day outside with no shirt on and I'm as brown I will get. The UV levels are similar over here to what you fella's get, so i think its those intense heat periods you get that forces watermelons, sweet potatoes and squash to crawl into the shade and not UV, doesn't happen here.

Yep, I reckon your UV would be similar. Just had a quick look at the literature on this, a meta analysis (315,000 participants) found no increased risk of skin cancer with sunscreen use, it found no protective benefits either. The early data up to 80's showed a strongly protective association which decreased to the point where it was no longer significant in the mid 90's. Maybe changes in formula? Interesting though.

Plant Breeding / Re: Climate Change Breeding
« on: 2019-12-29, 08:39:26 PM »
I ran into something interesting last spring--UV levels were at extreme levels, and we were told to stay inside or wear protection outside. I noticed the watermelons, sweet potatoes and squash actually crawling INTO the shade! They started sprawling normally later in the season, but I'd never seen that before. It seems to me that the plants know what to do to protect themselves.

Check out some of the Australian adapted varieties then. 20 mins in the sun here can get you burnt. One of the highest incidences of skin cancer in the world and 2 to 3 times the rate in Canada, USA and the UK. Sunscreen here is not optional.

Tomatoes / Re: Tomato Microbiome article
« on: 2019-12-23, 08:47:31 PM »
I wonder whether you could just dry the plant leaves in a paper bag and when planting put them in a bucket, agitate with some surfactant (like Tween 20) and use the resulting mix to innoculate. Might be worth a try.

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