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Your best, large flowered, rust resistant white tet?

11 years ago

This summer I was making a number of crosses on a new (to me) near-white tet daylily (whose name and parentage will go unstated). It has a large lovely flower which opens well (an important consideration here), and I was generally enjoying it...

...until today, when I discovered rust on it. :(

I have an interest in near-white tet daylilies, and I want to hybridize to get a large flowered one with the traits that I want: rust resistance, opens well after a cool night, some rebloom.

I have WONDER OF IT ALL (and just got WONDERS NEVER CEASE and JT DAVIS (though you can't call that last one near-white)) for use in hybridizing. Does anyone have another recommendation for a rust resistant large flowered near-white tet?

(And, in that vein, does anyone have any experience on crossing rust resistant daylilies verus the rusty ones? I do have some seed pods from this daylily versus WONDER OF IT ALL, and vice versa, and am wondering if it is going to be worth the space (which is limited here) to grow out the seedlings.)

Thanks.

Comments (18)

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Oh, please share which plant has the rust problem! It will be helpful to those of us with the same concerns as you! The daylily world becomes a better place as we become better informed about which plants to grow/breed and which plants to avoid.

    I don't have any answer to your original question, but I bet Ed can help if he's reading this. The nearest thing I have to white is a bad opener *and* a ruster (WORLD PREMIERE).

    I am crossing plants for rust resistance as well, but I haven't been doing it long enough to have any real information for you. My expectation is that rust resistance is somewhat recessive, since most daylilies do not seem to be very resistant.

    However, if you're like Ed (who is much more experienced than me), you'll think of resistance more as "plants that are affected less badly" rather than "plants that are immune."

    I don't think it's a waste of space to try your seedlings, but if you are interested in rust resistance, you really do need to allow some untreated rusty plants to grow near your seedlings so that you can effectively evaluate them. If they rust more than you like, tear them out and that space is available for the next batch. :)

    Nate

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    With great reluctance (not because I don't think we need a rust resistant (or not) database - we DO (and the original daylilyrust.org survey that is much quoted is neither current nor complete)), but because I really don't want to be seen as "bad mouthing" anybody (or their introductions), AND with the following caveats:

    1) I am NOT saying that this plant was covered with rust or a total rust bucket. I probably wouldn't have even noticed the FEW rust pustules on it, if I hadn't been standing right over it, eyes drifting over the (potted) plant while I was mulling which of a couple of pollen parents to use on it.

    2) I am PRESUMING the rust came from one or another Lily Auction plants which were roughly in the vicinity (and which had rust) - but I could be wrong about that. (Those plants ended up in a tub behind a pair of sheds, whereas this plant is in a pot on the other side of the sheds.) The plant COULD have been exposed to rust back in its original garden, or it could have picked it up from contact with another plant at the club sale table last fall - and it could just have been very slow in developing the pustules. (And let me hasten to add, I am NOT accusing the person who donated the plant of knowingly pushing off rust-infected plants; to the best of my knowledge, that person is very ethical.)

    and

    3) The daylily does have some (imho) very desirable traits which may still make it worthwhile both as a garden plant and as a parent (depending on the relative amount of rust susceptibility it has - and the jury is still out on that); unlike the two Lily Auction plants that I tossed due to rapid onset of rust pustules, I am (at this time, and until such time (if ever) that it is clearly intolerably rusty) still keeping this daylily around.

    I will give up the name.

    But to first clearly summarize, what I am saying about this daylily is that A) it has SOME rust, but B) this says nothing about HOW rust prone the plant is. (And that perhaps goes in line with your statement of thinking of rust resistance as a relative thing and there being no such thing as absolute immunity.)

    All that said, the daylily in question is WHITE WOLF. It is from a cross of KNIGHTS IN WHITE SATIN by PRESUMED INNOCENT.

    * now feels guilty *

    I have tried to find out which of those parents is rust sensitive (so as to avoid them or their other offspring), but I haven't been able to find any data.

    As for your comment on WORLD PREMIERE being a "ruster", that is both a surprise and a disappointment. It is a surprise because Bill Maryott's description includes the line "Reported to be very rust resistant." (I admit that that statement itself surprised me when I read it, as I was under the impression that its pollen parent VICTORIAN LACE is rust prone.)

    But presuming that you have the right plant, and also presuming that there were no mistakes in the plants Bill sent out which were reported on (by now I presume that anyone and everyone in the nursery business can and does make mistakes), this may be one of those cases where the plant behaves differently in different (micro)climates. (As an example, per the daylilyrust.org survey ED BROWN ran the gamut between excellent and poor garden value in the presence of rust - though most reports did have it at one end of the resistance spectrum.)

    If you are correct about it being rusty, it is a disappointment because I recently bought the plant partly on the strength of the rust resistance report (but there were other reasons as well). I guess I will see how it does here (and only hybridize it with partners who are reputedly rust resistant).

    Re the seedlings, I agree that it is valuable to have a rust bucket around to test the resistance (or not) of seedlings with. I have to say, though, that I rather cringe at the thought of deliberately exposing my garden - let alone my seedlings - to The Scourge.

    Of course, that makes me something of a hypocrite, as I want to rid my garden of rust exposure and coddle my Precious Little Seedlings while I simultaneously and routinely mutter against hybridizers who have no information on the rust resistance (or not) of their introductions!

    I do feel that, as a society, we should be hybridizing in the direction of resistance, but I also realize that there are various factors working against this, including but not limited to state agricultural licensing and restrictions and also climate differences. (And I am sure, financial considerations aside, that the commercial hybridizers are no more eager to have rust running loose in their gardens/greenhouses/fields than I am!)

    This whole rust situation is a problem - and for some of us, the solution is not in routine spraying. Which is why we need rust resistant cultivars. Which is why (in order to produce new resistant cultivars) we need to know which current cultivars are resistant, or not.

    But it sure does feel like you are bad mouthing a plant (or hybridizer) if you give up any rust information - and the information isn't positive.

    And now I think I've ranted/rambled enough.

    * slinks off *

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  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    It's a tough situation.

    In my mind, I'm not slandering a hybridizer by saying that one of his/her plants gets rust, because it's not something that most of the major ones are even capable of screening for (for the reasons you listed). And I'm not really hurting their bottom line by pointing out a disappointing plant unless it's a very new release.

    And since rust is a regional problem, it's barely a consideration for half of the US.

    As for bad mouthing a plant, I don't care. It doesn't have feelings. People who will buy it and be disappointed by it have feelings. :)

    Bill Maryott does not have rust in his fields because he sprays so effectively, so he obviously has to work from second hand reports. I suppose WORLD PREMIERE did better than other plants in someone's garden, and that's where his information comes from.

    In my garden, it has not been the first to rust, but it has developed a fair amount of pustules in spring 2011 and 2012 from plants neighboring it. Since it's in the front yard, I haven't really allowed the rust to persist long enough to see how bad it gets if untreated. I'm not interested in breeding WORLD PREMIERE for various reasons, but I do need to make a better personal commitment to allowing rust to stay on the cultivars that I am interested in breeding.

    I think for your WHITE WOLF crosses, if you really want to learn, you have to allow both WHITE WOLF and its seedlings to go untreated for an extended period and see how bad they get.

    But it's tough. We want our plants to be healthy and look good.

    I'm including a photo of how WORLD PREMIERE foliage looked this winter before I started treating it.

    Nate

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Up here I've never had problems with rust. Winters are usually too cold. Great White is a nice near white and I've never had problems with it not wanting to open. I have had problems with World Premiere not wanting to fully open this year-but it's been an odd year, so I won't hold it against it. Last Snowflake is pretty too, but I don't have it so I can't say how it performs, I saw it at someone's garden last summer.

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thank you for your kind words, Nate.

    WHITE WOLF currently does not look as bad as your picture of WORLD PREMIERE does, though it may in time.

    For what it's worth, here are some bloom pictures from WHITE WOLF from just the other day:

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    That is a really nice looking bloom. I can see why you like it. :)

    Nate

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    What's maddening is that WHITE WOLF will continue to bloom for a while yet, and I don't know what to do with it! Ideally I would like to keep it going until I can collect seed pods from it (which I think precludes cutting the foliage down, let alone the scape!), but I don't want it infecting everything else. I've selectively cut out the pustule-y parts of the foliage and sprayed with a Dawn solution, but now I guess it's watch it like a hawk, and rinse-and-repeat the cut-n-spray.

    Today there were two blooms open on it (which I would normally rejoice about, but instead I looked at them with a jaundiced eye), and also a last flower open on WONDER OF IT ALL - so I did a reciprocal cross. I also saved some pollen from WOIA, which I suppose I will use to pollinate a few more blooms on WHITE WOLF. But if I can't keep the rust at bay, any pods set on WW will all be for naught.

    (And that poses another interesting question... I know that rust infects the leaves and scapes, but what about seed pods and seeds? What about pollen?!!)

    One thing that *did* belatedly occur to me, is that that particular potted daylily gets a lot of moisture on its foliage. It is sitting in a spot where it probably catches some sprinkler spray, and to water it (because I am too lazy to go around with a watering can) I blast it with a hose.

    I am wondering if maybe I should move the pot and stop hose watering it, at least long enough to let pods the mature. (We live in the San Francisco south bay area, so our climate is dry and sunny all summer - not really conducive towards rust during this time of the year, and in dry years not in the spring or fall, either. That might also explain why WHITE WOLF is showing rust, whereas VICTORIAN LACE, sitting in a pot around 4 feet away but very dry, is not.)

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I do not know of any rust resistant TET near white. Sorry, I can’t help you there. I do know that many near whites have ADMIRAL’S BRAID in their background and it is a very rusty daylily. A quick check on the parentage of WHITE WOLF, show KNIGHTS IN WHITE SATIN which scored poorly on the daylilyrust.org survey. Both of its parents DRUID'S CHANT X BIG BLUE also scored poorly on the survey. And DRUID’S CHANT is out of ADMIRAL’S BRAID.

    Of the daylilies you mentioned, JT DAVIS is the most rust resistant in my garden. But I would only give it an average rating.

    While I understand your reluctance with regards to labeling a daylily as rusty, I am glad you shared it publicly. I used to share your reluctance, but no longer. For the most part, I don’t think daylily growers care whether a plant is rusty or not. It is only a problem for those of us in the deep south. As Nate pointed out, it isn’t a big concern for the rest of the country. As long as consumers will buy them...the hybridizers will keep producing them. Having said that, I would not buy WHITE WOLF after reading about your experience. I have learned the hard way that if a daylily is rusty in your garden, it is probably going to be rusty in my garden too. Your information is important to me...but it would not deter most of the people on this forum. Rust isn’t a huge problem for them. They judge daylilies by other criteria...they want to know if it’s cold hardy...or if it opens well in the early morning...or if it fades in all day sun...etc. None of these traits “ruin” a daylily or hybridizers reputation. In my opinion, it is just information that some buyers find useful.

    I have had good luck with cutting scapes with green pods, bringing the scapes indoors and placing them in a vase with water and allowing them to mature. The pods were about 3-4 weeks from maturity and produced viable seeds. I do not know how mature the pods need to be for this to work, but it is an option if you decide to cut a daylily to the ground so that you can treat it for rust. But...all the crosses I have made that had a rusty parent have produced rusty seedlings. Please keep in mind that my backyard operation is very small...only about 300 seedlings per year. I started hybridizing in 2006. I’m not trying to discourage you. On the contrary, I wish you great success! I’d love for you to produce a rust resistant near white and would probably buy it when I could afford it.

    Best of luck,
    Kathy

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thanks for your comments, Kathy! I also appreciate the information on KNIGHTS IN WHITE SATIN. (I did a Google search on that daylily name and rust, but it didn't pop up anything; usually most daylilies that are on the daylilyrust.org survey list will pop up near the top of such a Google search, but for whatever reason it didn't, and I didn't think to search the list anyway. Duh!)

    I didn't realize that rust resistance (or lack thereof) was not a concern for many people. I do not like spraying chemicals around my garden, so it is very much a concern to me.

    I have a small backyard hybridizing operation too, which is mostly aimed at polymerous daylilies. I like the near-whites, though (what else are you going to use in your Moon Garden?), and so I am both acquiring those in tets (I am moving away from dips), and starting to try my hand at hybridizing those. (I want large lovely consistently formed flowers that open early and well after a cool/cold night, on tall well-branched and budded scapes, on a rust resistant plant. Good flower substance, diamond dusting, fragrance, extended bloom, and rebloom would be nice, too! I'm not asking for much, am I? LOL!)

    I realize that I am risking rusty seedlings by using a rusty parent, but I am hopeful that at least some offspring will be an improvement on that score, if the other parent has some rust resistance. One can dream, anyway.

    I don't know if I would ever sell anything, even if I were ever so fortunate enough to actually get a seedling worth registering. Wouldn't one be required to get a nursery license, which would bring with it nursery inspectors (did I say that I like my privacy?) and therefore doubtless a requirement to SPRAY? Um, no thanks.

    (I have actually given this what-if scenario a bit of thought. One option, I suppose, would to be to move to a zone 5 area - but I don't think DH would be willing to go along with that! Another option would be to ask someone else to introduce for me, but that is something that I would feel funny about and would be hesitant to do, even if they got all the money and I got all the glory. I would think that the established hybridizers (ones with their own nurseries and commercial presence) would want to concentrate on their own introductions.)

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I'm sure you don't need a nursery license to sell on the Lily Auction or Ebay, but other than those two places I'm unsure about your marketing options. I have never registered a daylily, but I don't think you need a nursery license to register it. I'll post a link with more info below.

    I also wanted to mention that you can get near white daylilies through purple breeding. I've had some success with this in my own garden. Here is a near white DIP seedling with two purple/lavender parents -

    100521 (CHARLIE PIERCE MEMORIAL X INDIAN GIVER) X LIVING ECHOES

    I only mention it as a possibility of reaching your goal without necessarily using near white parents. I thought you might find it interesting. Good luck!
    Kathy

    Here is a link that might be useful: How to register a daylily

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Anyone can register a daylily. Pay the fee, name it, and it doesn't matter how good it is. Share it with your friends, sell it on auctions, and as long as it isn't a business, you don't need a nursery license.

    If you are friends with a retail seller, they might introduce it into commerce for you. If it's really good, they might pay you to do so!

    Thanks Kathy for the additional information -- I find it useful as well!

    Nate

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    That's a fairly white seedling there, Kathy! Congrats!

    I knew that anyone (well, with at least two years as an AHS member - and I've been a member for a lot longer than that) can register daylilies. The issue comes with being legally able to sell them - and that includes on the Lily Auction and Ebay.

    That said, I would have little problem with donating a plant or two to the local clubs - no shipping out of state, everyone there would probably also have the same insect and disease issues (if not worse than I do, as I don't buy plants every year), no one (except the club) profits, and most of the other members donating plants also are lacking a nursery license. (Not that I think that anyone else there has much interest in polymerous daylilies, lol!)

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I did not know that you had to be a member of the AHS to register a daylily. For two years? Really?

    Kathy

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You no longer have to be a member of AHS to register a daylily. That requirement was changed a couple of years ago.

    A large near white I grow that is supposed to be rust resistant is Petit's Queen of Narnia.

    QUEEN OF NARNIA

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    They changed the requirement? Really?!

    Thanks, Shive, for the comment and picture on QUEEN OF NARNIA. It looks pretty and I looked at it at one time, but at 25" the scapes are a little low for my taste. Most of the ones that I have been buying lately have been registered at or above 30" tall. (I made an exception for BALLERINA ON ICE because (if I got that right) it is supposedly an emo and cmo as well as having some rust resistance.)

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    As far as I know, Queen of Narnia and a later Petit white out are the only two supposedly rust resistant whites. If you crossed Queen of Narnia with taller whites, you would produce taller offspring. Petit has been breeding for rust resistant whites for several years. Since I haven't had rust in the three years I've had Queen of Narnia, I can't vouch for it. Someone mentioned Last Snowflake. I can definitely tell you that one, Arctic Lace and Winter Springs are susceptible to rust. They all three had it five years ago in my garden. I don't recall Victorian Lace be affected then.

    Debra

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I've been hybridizing for rust resistance for about 10 years. I can say that JT DAVIS is above average rust resistance, and gives good form in seedlings. Of the ones you list, I would use it most. I seriously doubt QUEEN OF NARNIA is that resistant to rust with its parentage. SILOAM RALPH HENRY is very rusty, as is KEY LIME ICE. I would get someone's recommendation growing it in the rust belt before believing the claims. I've heard of claims that you can get a resistant plant from the cross of two rusty plants, but not in my experience.
    My suggestion for you would be similar to Kathy's. Lavenders and sometimes purples throw whites when the genes for carotenoids have been turned off. Look for lavenders or purples with little to no yellow in the flower. I would recommend crossing with BELA LUGOSI, which is a very rust resistant purple. I would also suggest FRED HAM and RUFFLED DUDE as pale yellows that are very rust resistant and might produce a pale rust resistant offspring. I use GREAT WHITE and VICTORIAN LACE a lot, but even crossing to resistant cultivars, I don't remember seeing anything out of them with more than average resistance. You will probably need several generations to get something pleasing from them.
    The only near white I have heard of that has decent resistance is Tim Bell's BABY LAMB, but I'm even a little dubious about it.
    Good luck, Ed

  • 11 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thanks for all of your helpful information, Debra and Ed. It is food for thought, for sure.

    I'll have to think about BABY LAMB. It is a LOT shorter than I like, but I have a small flowered seedling that I am working with (not for whites but for polys) which I have no clue as to rust resistance on. (I may find out this year, though. Sigh.) If I need to work resistance into there (but decide that I want to keep a smaller flower), that seems like a good prospective parent.

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