Arisaema hybridization

Paul Tyerman tyerman at DYNAMITE.COM.AU
Tue Aug 8 07:38:06 CEST 2000

I recently received seed of 3 species of rare Fritillaria that had been
crossed onto Fritillaria meleagris because the parents were so poor to set
seed.  In the interests of keeping the genetics available in an endangered
species they set the pollen onto F. meleagris as it produces seed very
readily.  It seems that they regarded it as fairly common practice to mix a
few rare pollens together onto a seed-bearing host.

For reference this was from a collection in Denmark.

I really don't know how rare the species are, but that was his explanation
of why the cross was made.

I hope that doesn't shock people too much.  This gentleman is an official
of a seed-bank in Denmark.

Thought people might be interested that there are reasons for sometimes
polluting the purity of the species <grin>........ plus you can sometimes
come up with something very different that way. (Which some people like the
idea of and others don't)


Paul Tyerman
Canberra, Australia.  USDA equivalent - Zone 8
mailto:tyerman at

>I recall years ago when I first got involved with Aroid-L, I asked
>the question if anyone was working with arisaema hybrids. I
>immediately received a reply from  Peter Boyce who was, in effect,
>appalled that anyone would consider contaminating the pure genetic
>material of the true species.
>Well, it's going to happen, like it or not. Given that we are dealing
>with mostly dioecious (sp?) species, if we only have one specimen of
>a plant (or no males) the other parent is probably another species
>(barring apomixis). The first hybrid I ran across was sikokianum x
>takedae, which was an intentional cross made by Don Jacobs of Eco
>Gardens. Since then, mainly in the greenhouse in early spring, I have
>moved a little pollen around myself using takedae, sikokianum,
>takedae x sikokianum, angustatum peninsulae, triphyllum, serratum,
>and others. Some of these I have submitted to the AEG seedex, with
>their putative heritages.

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