Author Topic: On extremely compact seedlings.  (Read 817 times)

caladri

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On extremely compact seedlings.
« on: June 21, 2023, 12:24:20 AM »
I thought the group might find this interesting. Those of us who grow lots of seedlings witness a wide range of mutations and unexpected growth habits, many of which seem to rapidly decline. Now and then I see seedlings with a very small growth habit, which don't tend to survive long. I wanted to share one which so far has survived, I think, a little bit more than a year, while still retaining an extremely compact form.


These three yuzu seedlings were grown from the same batch of seed collected from commercial yuzu fruit, almost certainly from a planting of VI 619. They were germinated at around the same time, and then potted up at the same time. They're a bit more than a year old, although I don't tend to keep records of when I've sown what, and can't be more specific. They spent the winter in an unheated garage and spent last summer sheltered on a cool outdoor rack, and so didn't put on much growth until this year. They've been in an unheated greenhouse since late winter, around February, and have had sun protection since around April. (It's a new greenhouse, and I've had some really difficult days managing sun and heat!)


This is the middle-sized seedling of the lot, being about three inches tall. You can see five or six leaf nodes.


Here is the largest of the three, about six inches tall. I treat my plants pretty lazily and in non-ideal conditions, so the variation between these two is typical. Maybe six or seven nodes.


This is the extremely compact seedling. You can see that the leaves are significantly smaller and darker, and that difference in colour is even more obvious in person. It's around a quarter of an inch tall. I think others have mentioned having tetraploid seedlings whose leaves are similarly small and dark?


Seen from the side, it is apparent that the node count is roughly similar, and that the inter-node spacing is extremely compressed compared to normal. (A friend of mine joked that the USSR would've loved this for their attempts to breed short, sprawling citrus that could be grown in trenches without much management. "Flat trees," I think was the goal.)

I have no idea if it will continue to survive, and perhaps it will die as a fleeting curiosity, as so many strange seedlings do I hope not. It's oddly charismatic, especially in person, and I'd love some day to be able to see if grafting it onto a more vigorous rootstock results in pushing more growth with the same small inter-node distance, or if it would change growth habit completely. I haven't made any inspection of its roots, and given my expectation that it would be rather fragile, I'm not yet inclined to try.

Anyone else have any curiously-compact citrus seedlings? :)

vnomonee

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2023, 01:19:10 AM »
I've seen an extremely compact yuzu seedling like that on Reddit, it made a flower too. I think the owner said they neglected it and it died

bussone

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2023, 09:46:15 AM »
It almost looks like it has a mutation where it doesn't grow stems. It almost looks like a 1st-year thistle in this form. Does it have spines?

I'm curious what the roots are like.

brian

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2023, 03:28:56 PM »
I have read about two interesting things in this area:

1) "rosette" type trifoliates, extreme dwarfing, looking like your pictures.  They were described as "not viable" or not useful as rootstock, but I couldn't find any explanation as to why.  Assuming you want an extremely compact bonsai-type tree it sounds like it would be a good fit.  I got the impression that these are uncommon but not exceptionally rare

2) a "super dwarf" flying dragon I see for sale occasionally from a site I have bookmarked, but it is very expensive and I am skeptical it is really anything special and I'm not willing to spend the money to find out
« Last Edit: June 21, 2023, 03:33:28 PM by brian »

caladri

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2023, 09:00:55 PM »
Aha, thanks for mentioning the term "rosette", if I'd encountered that before, it fell out of my head. Several interesting articles, including this one, which tempts me to bust out the gibberellic acid, but I won't :) https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/jjshs1925/63/1/63_1_23/_pdf

pagnr

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2023, 09:26:25 PM »
It is a bit similar to Chinotto sour orange seedlings, but even more compact.

BorisR

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2023, 07:47:38 AM »
According to my observations, such seedlings also have a very weak root system. I think they are dying because of this.

BorisR

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1rainman

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2023, 07:44:37 PM »
The really slow growth low vigor is the problem. I get a lot of dwarf types that barely grow at all from grape seed. I get fed up and just pull the up. Curiously both excessive inbreeding and excessive outbreeding cause this. Self pollinated seedlings or similar highly inbred ones. Inbred ones if you cross them again vigor is restored and they turn normal. Or two species of grape that are far apart or complex hybrids some of them come out vigorous some come out stunted depending how the genes mix but that will eventually breed out of them as well and return to normal in a few generations if the abnormal ones are tossed. Could be a mutation but inbreeding and crossbreeding is the most common cause. A plant might pollinate itself. A small percent will have semi normal growth despite being inbred but many will be stunted or weird.

I just don't have the patience to wait years on a slow growing plant.

Pandan

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2023, 11:58:11 PM »
The really slow growth low vigor is the problem. I get a lot of dwarf types that barely grow at all from grape seed. I get fed up and just pull the up. Curiously both excessive inbreeding and excessive outbreeding cause this. Self pollinated seedlings or similar highly inbred ones. Inbred ones if you cross them again vigor is restored and they turn normal. Or two species of grape that are far apart or complex hybrids some of them come out vigorous some come out stunted depending how the genes mix but that will eventually breed out of them as well and return to normal in a few generations if the abnormal ones are tossed. Could be a mutation but inbreeding and crossbreeding is the most common cause. A plant might pollinate itself. A small percent will have semi normal growth despite being inbred but many will be stunted or weird.

I just don't have the patience to wait years on a slow growing plant.
Grafting and embryo rescue/ tissue culture are used for weak intergeneric crosses for some of the reasons youve stated.

Ilya11

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2023, 01:17:21 PM »
Very unusual seedling indeed. Also has apparently serrated leave margins, no visible petiole; very untypical for Yuzu.
I have a hybrid seedling (5star citrumeloXCocktail) that has another type of compact shape. Up to 6 month age it has normal growth, but than all new leaves become  very small with extremely short internodes.

 

This spring some well developed leaves appeared again.


Best regards,
                       Ilya

1rainman

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Re: On extremely compact seedlings.
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2023, 03:25:59 AM »
The really slow growth low vigor is the problem. I get a lot of dwarf types that barely grow at all from grape seed. I get fed up and just pull the up. Curiously both excessive inbreeding and excessive outbreeding cause this. Self pollinated seedlings or similar highly inbred ones. Inbred ones if you cross them again vigor is restored and they turn normal. Or two species of grape that are far apart or complex hybrids some of them come out vigorous some come out stunted depending how the genes mix but that will eventually breed out of them as well and return to normal in a few generations if the abnormal ones are tossed. Could be a mutation but inbreeding and crossbreeding is the most common cause. A plant might pollinate itself. A small percent will have semi normal growth despite being inbred but many will be stunted or weird.

I just don't have the patience to wait years on a slow growing plant.
Grafting and embryo rescue/ tissue culture are used for weak intergeneric crosses for some of the reasons youve stated.

Out of 20 seeds maybe one or two is extremely vigorous and tough. Some get disease due to being a hybrid some don't. Some are stunted. I just select the strong ones.

 

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