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Messages - Ferdzy

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Plant Breeding / Re: TPS 2019
« on: 2019-04-18, 07:24:14 PM »
It looks like there is an exception for "Home Garden Varieties" that are grown on less than 1 hectare.  That ought to accommodate most small breeding.

Ah? I didn't see that. (I still don't to be honest, but maybe I'm a little mesmerized by the fact that they want data via slides or CD.) But yes, that would solve the problem.

Plant Breeding / Re: TPS 2019
« on: 2019-04-18, 06:28:55 PM »
Bill; Duane Falk seemed to think that some people had died from eating it; old people in a nursing home that excess potatoes were donated to. It's true that the increased death-rate while they were being served was likely not absolutely linkable to it. But whether it killed people or just made Gary Johnston sick doesn't change the fact that in Canada, it is legally required to register new potato varieties if you are going to sell them.

Here's a page about doing so. Appendix V about half way down deals with potatoes.

Reed; I assume TGA is an abbreviation for glycoalkaloids, in which case yes.

We've had the best success by starting our seeds in pots in the spring, transplanting them at the earliest opportunity, and then we water them quite a lot because our soil is so sandy and dries out so fast.

Plant Breeding / Re: TPS 2019
« on: 2019-04-18, 02:42:26 PM »
It occurs to me that one of the barriers to a seed-grown potato, at least here in Canada, is legal. As I described in my first blog post, after the Lenape potato killed a number of people through its high level of glycoalkaloids all potatoes must be registered in order to be commercially sold, and that involves paying $750 (last figure I heard, don't know if still accurate) for the testing.

Plant Breeding / Re: Salt tolerant varieties
« on: 2019-04-15, 07:27:28 AM »
Salsola soda, or agretti, is another one for the list.

Edited to add: Also the related Okahijiki.

Plant Breeding / Re: TPS 2019
« on: 2019-04-13, 12:04:42 PM »
Is a true seed-grown annual potato possible?

It might be. We have some seeds that were given to us by Duane Falk, a breeder who used to work at U of Guelph. They were from potatoes he acquired in Latvia. They produced - literally - buckets of seed balls and he was handing them out by the handful to people who attended a workshop he had.

Workshop write-up here:

We've grown out a few of those seeds each year for a couple of years now. It seems like in each batch of, say, about 100 seeds that we plant, we get 2 or 3 that grow so prodigiously that the yield is as good a planting a clone piece of an established variety or better. So far, the bad news is that the flavour seems to range between ho-hum and terrible. I believe we do have tubers from one that was both prolific and decent tasting. We plan to continue to sow seed from this source and keep the most productive and flavourful, and then let them cross again - the ultimate result may very well be consistenly good and productive potatoes that can be grown directly from seed. Or not; who knows. But given their behaviour thus far it doesn't seem like that crazy an idea.

You can see some of our seed-grown potatoes in this post here:

Plant Breeding / Re: Dahlias and other edible flowers
« on: 2019-04-04, 06:28:25 PM »
Dried day lily buds are a key ingredient in hot and sour soup; but I don't know of any other classic recipe that calls for them. Of course, I don't know much about Chinese cuisine in general.

This article mentions a couple of other. Mu shu pork? I've had that but I don't recall the day lily buds. Of course, it's possible that the restaurants I've had it at couldn't be arsed to put it in for picky lo-fan.

Plant Breeding / Re: Paste Tomatoes Project
« on: 2019-04-01, 08:46:40 AM »
I see a mention of Speckled Roman here. We grew it for a few years and really liked it as a tomato. However, as time went on the septoria leaf spot got to be more and more of a problem in our garden. In our experience resistance to that varies only slightly, and the only plant strategy that really works is being long and rangy and out-growing it. Speckled Roman was an exception in that it was particularly susceptible to septoria leaf spot because the fungus didn't just affect the leaves, but also would grow on the "speckles" leaving us with a lot of unusable fruit. I don't know how other tomatoes with that kind of pattern on the fruit do; we haven't grown a lot of them.

Plant Breeding / Re: Salt tolerant varieties
« on: 2019-04-01, 06:31:52 AM »
We get salty water from our deep well. I couldn't tell you exactly how salty, but it is definitely there. We don't use it, at all, after our first disasterous attempt. It killed ALL our peas and beans. Other plants did varying degrees of badly. We have a shallow well as well and now we use it until it runs out (a few weeks after it stops raining) then we switch to town water. (We have gone up to 6 months with no rain, but 4 to 6 weeks is more typical.)

Other comments - the water from the deep well worked okay until it stopped raining. Once the plants were getting NO other water they could no longer cope. Peas and beans died completely. I'm linking to what I wrote about it at the time. Looking at the photos it seems like most other things didn't do as badly as I remembered. Also, it was a combination of salty water and high heat that did them in. Another thing to keep in mind - it was our 3rd year of gardening here and our soil was still in a fairly poor unimproved state, which would have reduced the ability to cope as well.

Beets, kale, spinach, tomatoes and peppers get mentioned as being salt-tolerant. Asparagus is a sea-side plant and people actually put salt on it to weed it, I hear. Sea kale is another salt-tolerant perennial, but I haven't grown it.

Beans and peas, cucumbers, lettuce, and radishes get mentioned as having LOW tolerance and that was sure our experience with the beans and peas.

Because excess salt is a common problem in agriculture there is a lot of research available out there.

Short but intriguing article at Atlas Obscura about pre-Columbian farming around what is today St. Louis - it mentions some plants that I am not familiar with at all.

Plant Breeding / Re: Sunflower - Giant Russian.
« on: 2019-03-27, 05:11:16 AM »
Is it the seed coats that are allelopathic, or the entire plant?

I'm not sure, but I suspect the whole plant. And I suspect that some things tolerate them better than others. I tend to think of beans as being a bit sensitive in general, so I wouldn't be surprised if they don't like being too close to sunflowers. A little googling shows people do grow them up sunflowers, but at least one person was noting that they should not be planted too close.

Plant Breeding / Re: Sunflower - Giant Russian.
« on: 2019-03-26, 04:41:59 PM »
Sunflowers are allelopathic, too - it may be that they are discreetly poisoning the beans.

Plant Breeding / Re: Wild Onions & Breeding with them
« on: 2019-03-20, 06:21:44 AM »
@Walt, this is interesting. I have had a little patch of fistulosum for years, and never worried about whether they were blooming at the same time as onions or shallots. They have just about died out - the few that were left bloomed last year but formed no seed. I don't think they would have contributed much to our onion gene pool as they are about 200 feet away from where the onions usually are. Not sure what I will do with this info, but maybe something. Thanks.

Seed Saving / Re: In Ground -Biennial Roots- Harsh Winters
« on: 2019-03-09, 02:45:26 PM »
Kai, I don't know what your springs are like but March is when I go out and walk around the garden saying, "It survived! It's alive!"

May is when I walking around the garden saying, "No, it's dead. It died."

Or to put it another way, more things are killed by freeze-thaw cycles in the spring than by steady winter temperatures, especially if you get snow cover.

I think I'm saying, wait a bit.

Plant Breeding / Re: Beans and Anthracnose
« on: 2019-03-08, 05:40:29 PM »
We just ate some of the beans from the CToT-Blue Lake cross for dinner; purple ones by the looks of them. They held up very well in the freezer - tender but still a little crisp, really nice flavour, no strings. I'm getting excited about these!

Plant Breeding / Re: Lima Beans
« on: 2019-03-08, 02:12:38 PM »
My impression from admittedly only 3 years of growing more than one variety of Lima bean is that they aren't particularly inclined to cross, at least not the ones I have, not here. Formal introductions may make a difference.

IF they follow the pattern of phaseolus vulgaris there should be a wide range of vine types possible. What you are describing is a type of bean plant that was favoured by first nations growers, but not generally liked by European growers, who wanted either definite pole beans or definite bush beans. Native heirloom phaseolus vulgaris often have rangy side-vines, if that's the right term (I know it isn't) and grow to about corn height (so the six or so feet you are looking for). On the other hand, I think Limas have been less influenced by European ideas about how plants should behave, so if there is a dearth of mid-length vines it might be because they don't do it well. All this is just wild speculation on my part. As usual, nothing to do but try!

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