Oh the trouble with peas! ... Now I just need to figure out how to cross the three kinds of peas together to get the segregating population I need for adaptation...
Peas are easy to cross by hand. I can get two generations a year here, start early with a few plants, do the manual crosses, then sow the green seed when its mature and get a second seed crop over summer/autumn. With around 6-7 seeds per pod, getting 5 or 6 pods off a F1 plant, with a dozen plants you get plenty of seed to assess in the F2 plants next year. you could even try crossing the F1 plants with each other.
If you want combos of 3 varieties, grow A, B and C. Do three crosses AB AC BC (if you aren't concerned about mitochondrial DNA the pollen donor doesn't matter). Grow 2 or 3 F1 plants from each cross, and cross them together. AB X BC, AC X BC, AB X AC. Grow out these multi cross F1s the next year, making sure you grow a few from each multi-cross. bulk the seed and then start selecting. You'll have so much diversity you will go cross-eyed.
If you can't get two crops a year, get a seedpal fromn elsewhere to do the 2nd growout for you, or use a greenhouse. Or maybe growlights, but i haven't tried them myself. It's only for one generation or so and speeds up the process so you can get selecting earlier. T
Last Edit: Jan 3, 2017 15:51:57 GMT -5 by templeton
Thanks Templeton for the comments on the peas the breeding scheme you laid out is very much what I have in mind. I've been growing my peas all mixed up in the hopes of some natural crossing. If any has occurred I haven't detected it yet. So I need to grow some plants and make some crosses.
My tomato seeds are germinating. Cotyledons have emerged though seedling is still doubled over on a Ararat Flame seedling from my local seed co-op Triple Divide Seed Co-op. It's a 60 day indeterminate variety. It did well last year. 60 days after transplant would give potentially just enough time to ripen a fruit or two here if direct seeded in a good year and nothing in a bad. Reliable from transplant though. I've long held to a belief that it's better to have short season indeterminates because in a good year they really produce a lot. I think I need some short season determinates in the mix though. I've been growing Bison because of it's Oscar H. Will seed company history and it is determinate. I want to try Silvery Fir Tree from triple divide and jagodka as main season tomatoes aside from my direct seeding project. Still waiting for more seed to arrive.
Zip Code 59864 Gardening, Weather and Climate Profile 2012 Hardiness Zone Zone 6a: -10F to -5F 1990 Hardiness Zone Zone 4a: -30F to -25F Köppen Climate Classification Dfb - Humid Continental Mild Summer, Wet All Ecoregion 15c - Flathead Valley Average First Frost Dates September 21 - 31 Average Last Frost Dates May 11 - 20
I don't have much fence building experience. I have a big garden expansion and orchard rescue started and would like to fence a big chunk of it to combat deer. To date I've managed to buy some fenceposts. Hopefully in late winter I can start driving them in. I have these poor seed grown apple trees many of them from Kazakhstan seed the USDA sent me in 2004. The deer prune them from above and the pocket gophers from below. I reckon they've been tested enough by my climate and wildlife. I would love to get them to bloom thus the fence. I've been rototilling around them to disrupt the pocket gopher habitat. So I plan to put in garden rows between them in 2017. One caveat is that I now know the orchard sits in a frost pocket. It's shorter season and harsher than the rest of my garden.
As far as garden planning goes I think the following should happen in 2017. Corn and squash should get the most roughly prepared ground outside of the fenced areas. Deer have been pretty kind to them. Tomatoes, beans, peas, and rice should get prime territory in the already fenced not as frost prone garden. Most of my native edible project needs to get kicked out of the premium garden to the orchard. Having more ground prepared then ever before gives a lot of options and I am not sure I am done. I may hire some more ground plowed. Ultimately I would like to have three gardens for 2017 if I can. There is a 2 acre section of my parents 20 acre hay parcel that was used for balled and burlap tree production by a former owner. There are still some ornament and fruit trees. Also some craters where trees were removed by tree spades. I want to have the ground around the remaining trees plowed up. Since deer have been leaving my squash alone it should give me a good isolation garden for squash and I can double the number of squash varieties I grow. I could grow naked seeded squash in one garden and Mandan in the other for pepo. Then I could grow my buttercups seep rate from my other landrace Maximas. Similar with corn. It would give me space to grow all of those "other" corns I've been longing to grow but don't for fear of messing up my flour corn and sweet corn. I'm not to fussy about my corn isolation but it would be nice if sweet stayed sweet, flour stayed flour, and popcorn stayed popcorn. The other three corn types flint, dent, and pod corn (should I ever reaquire it) as well as teosinte could form a happy mix- I would love to have their genes but doubt I will process them into human food any time soon.
Everything in my garden is more and more becoming a breeding project. I went to Ace Hardware today in Missoula. The seed racks are out. I bought things.
Arrowleaf Balsamroot- a native plant I want to collect some variable Arrowleaf Balsamroot germplasm. The plant is completely edible, seeds, leaves, roots, flower stalks. I have home saved Arrowleaf Balsamroot seeds, but I have this idea that it might be possible to make Arrowleaf Balsamroot better in some way if I can find the right genetics...
Golden Globe Turnip. Purple Top Turnip has gone feral in my garden and survived the past four years almost completely unchanged, but all I can think is hmm, lacks variability, so I am buying Golden Globe to introduce some variability.
Bitteroot Buttercup, because I am not sure if I already have its genes in my Maximas! I might, if I don't I do now as I have a new packet. I think I will try to separate buttercups this year a bit though- like Joseph does.
Green Arrow Peas- standard of comparison and potential cross parent
Bloomsdale Spinach- for my wife but I have another variety as well and yes I want them to cross
Quinoa Brightest Brilliant Rainbow- the last of mine died without setting seed last year, so trying again!
Monarda hybrid "Lambada" yep weird native plant hybrid, hoping it does interesting things.
Then when I was at the recent grains conference I ended up with some seeds.
Lofthouse Wheat- good for mixing / crossing with my other wheats
Cache Valley Rye- good for mixing / crossing with Rye I collected last summer in Hell's Canyon
Turkey Red Wheat- good for mixing / crossing with my other winter wheats
White Sonoran Wheat- good for mixing / crossing with my other wheats
Quinoa Campesino - intend to allow it to cross with my half packet of "Red Faro Quinoa", and my new packet of "Brightest Brilliant Rainbow" got some tips on how to grow Quinoa more successfully
I also got a random handful of grains I mixed while we were milling and a few Austrian winter peas we were cleaning out of a grain sample. I intend to sort those by species, wheat, oats, barley, and peas and then mix the species with my other mixes in the hopes of promoting crosses.
Two tomato seed orders came while I was gone- all for my short season tomato trialing and breeding scheme.
If I only have one variety of something, I kind of start looking for a different variety of the same thing so it has something to cross with and widen the gene pool.
I haven't done any intentional crosses to speak of in my garden (I hope to change this but its dependent on how busy I am). Mostly I just plant varieties close together or intentionally mix seed in the hopes that things cross. Still waiting to observe any outcrossing in some things but easy outbreeding species have been great for this.
Arrowleaf Balsamroot- [...] The plant is completely edible, seeds, leaves, roots, flower stalks.
I've heard that rumor for years. What I tried to eat was not edible to my modern taste buds.
True only two plant parts strike me as having promise for the modern taste bud. The first I've tried. The seeds- they taste fine. The second I know local Native American traditionalists still eat and that is the stem of the flower. Guessing about phenology of that- probably before any significant lignification of the vascular bundles occurs.
A Montana Native Plant society member from Helena came once to speak at my chapter and had tried to roast the root. He didn't much care for it describing it as "Balsamiferous". Native American preparation techniques were probably essential- it was one of those long 3 day pit roasted sorts of foods. We moderns may never find some parts of the plant palatable no matter the preparation.
Another part of the plant that might be worth exploring would be the young flower petals.
If I did eat the leaves it would be at first emergence from the ground before they are fully unfurled.
Though as a seed geek I would tend to see it primarily as a seed food.
Got most of the seeds native plant and fruiting trees and shrubs that require stratification planted in the greenhouse today. Would like to plant the rest but would also like to have the other half the greenhouse available for tomatoes, true potato seed, and transplanting come spring. I am playing around a bit with liquid smoke to try to enhance germination on the stratifying seeds. I bought a small bottle of liquid smoke from Walmart and am adding a little to the spray bottle I use to keep the seeds moist.
One of the 4th of July tomatoes I planted before heading to grain school has some stem peeking out. I hope it goes ahead and emerges. I thinned the December planting of tomatoes down to one plant per pot. I snipped them off except for one Bison seedling since that seed packets empty I pulled and re potted it. Repotting is the more usual route but it's a long time till spring!
The more determinate rice plants continue to senesce and die without ever setting viable seed. I wonder if I can force regeneration by pruning? I suspect winter rice breeding would/will require more light, bigger pots, and more heat. It's a bit cold in the corner of the basement I set up my wire rack and grow light. Might be good if my tomatoes grow slowly though. Gives me needed time.
Today's seed swap was good but low key. Most of the activity seemed centered around donating seed to the seed library and taking what you wanted. I missed some of the folks who came to the first one four years ago. Not much individual swapping happening. So eventually I just took what I wanted and donated some of what I brought to swap. I donated more than I took but I took more varieties than I donated so that evens out. I found a packet of packed for 2016 Silvery Fir Tree Tomato grown by the lady at good egg farm just down the road from me for Triple Divide Seed Co-op. Tomatoes were scarce I found only the one kind I wanted. I donated some tomatoes including Yellow Pear and Amethyst Jewel. After I sorted out some seed to donate I say at the envelope filling table and put Amethyst Jewel into envelopes for awhile. I only got about five envelopes made. There was a free bowl of the new version of Michael Pilarski's Friends of the Trees scatterseed mix My wife was so excited about at the first annual five valleys seed library seed swap in ~2014 so I dutifully scooped some into an envelope!
When I got home there was a packet of tomato seed waiting for me in the mail box including kibits so I planted a few seeds of five new kinds of tomato today including the silvery for tree.
Direct seeded a replicate of the direct seeded tomato project today out in the 1/10th acre fenced garden on my land. Also finished a replicate in the unheated greenhouse. My objective with both early replicates is to get something of the same effect as fall seeding. The ultimate objective being that the tomatoes should be fit in my climate. My early tomatoes are still hogging the grow lights. I need to start the main crop replicate soon...
I also seeded:
Cilantro from four sources: Joseph, my saved from last year, Missoula seed library, and a seed packet my wife had.
Fava beans: Joseph's, my seed saved Windsor, Ianto's Return, and frog island nation.
Peas including Joseph's shelling, purple podded, Austrian snow, Oregon sugar podded II, San Luis peas, green wrinkled saved, green arrow, and sugar snap.
I dumped my arrow leaf balsam root pots out where I want the seeds to grow- should work better direct seeded it's been stratifying and now I can get into my garden.
Tomatillos Joseph's, mike's, adaptive seeds purple landrace, terrapin farm's whitefish Montana strain, a short season polish strain from baker creek, and a purple strain from sandhill preservation.
Ground cherries from Joseph and Mike
Bees friend phacelia
TPS (just a smidgeon)
Montana strain miners lettuce
California strain miners lettuce Claytonia perfoliata
Claytonia sibirica (California strain)
Then since my garden expansion area is still under snow I planted some wheat and other grains in the unheated greenhouse. Including purple spring, lofthouse, red turkey, white Sonoran, winsome, hard red spring, khoriasan, purple tinged Ethiopian, purple tinged Ethiopian from a short awned head, cache valley rye, snake river rye, purple barley, and full pint barley.
Beets look poorly as do the carrots. I think Puya Asita carrot I fall seeded survived. I spotted one carrot in the Michael Pilarski scatterseed mix plot. I think one chard survived. The purple winter wheat survived, a rye plant survived. At least one true kale patch survived. My four year feral purple top turnips survived. The California strain Claytonia sibirica survived. Rodents made a mess with their winter burrowing they ate a fair number of the missing biennials. A fair amount of grass in the beds still / already. Pulled some of it. The local strain of horseradish I transplanted last fall survive and is growing a little. My California strain Yerba Buena may possibly be alive (and Montana hardy if so). Giant winter spinach from the local tripe divide seed co-op I fall planted is alive. Found an Orach seed germinating. Guess it's not too early to plant Orach!
Planted Orach: Triple Purple from Farmer Mike, red I saved last year, and Green White from Five Valleys seed library. Plan is to let them cross.
Planted the last of my unplanted Favas Ianto's Return, Windsor, and Turtle Island Nation plan is to let them cross
Planted Siberian Kale my 4 year feral and a packet of wild garden Kale- which might be a new packet of the mix my 4 year feral came from. Should add some diversity back into it.
Planted Spinach a mix of giant winter and Bloomsdale longstanding. I suspect this is primarily for eating. The giant winter I planted last fall made it through the winter and looks great. I plan to save it's seed and am thinking fall planting might be the way to save spinach seed. Though I am also planting much earlier in the spring than usual and it may just work out for seed production!
Planted Sunflowers: wild collected from near the Missoula airport, Arikara, saved seed of Hidatsa #1 that I let cross with Autumn Beauty, and a partial packet of Italian White my wife had.
Should be interesting!
My garden expansion area and orchard has a vernal pool in it that wasn't there last weekend!
Fennel survived- last week I thought it was gone. Swiss chard may be gone now- last week I thought there was one survivor, also a carrot dissapeared from the Pilarski scatterseed mix- a rodent victim no doubt.
A patch of the same true Kale that another patch survived of is coming back after the rodents did some winter mowing.
Saw lots more volunteer Orach.
I think this is the earliest I have ever started planting my garden. The soil in most of it is not workable but the sand raised beds can be planted
Last Edit: Mar 19, 2017 17:46:53 GMT -5 by William
My California strain Yerba Buena may possibly be alive (and Montana hardy if so).
Yerba Buena is one of my favorite plants! That would be cool if it was hardy in Montana. Did you grow that from seed? It grows wild in the woods where I live, and many years ago I transplanted some into my garden. Ever since I've been taking little pieces of it with me every time I move. It propagates so easily by rooted vines, that I've never tried growing it from seed.
SF Bay Area, Contra Costa County -- Inner Coast Ranges, former Oak Savanna. Hot, dry summers; cool, wet winters. ~240 frost free days. Last/first frost: Mar.15/Nov.15. Avg. annual precip: 17"(432mm).
I got my plant at the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden nursery last year when I was living Santa Barbara. It's native range does include parts of northwest Montana. It's still a little uncertain if it's alive- a portion on the north facing side of the raised bed looks promising. If not I took a start inside!