Peony Addicts,

Red Windflower (RW) is registered — APS 1986-96 Checklist, pp 22,23. Sdlg 76LSW-3. Laddie x Sparkling Windflower, the cross made in 1976. I thought of the name first, then tried to make a cross that would produce something worthy of the name. All the progeny were on the short side, so I settled on this one, -3, as the best for the name. None had the height, laterals, or grace of the Windflowers, and so I sometimes regret using-up the name. I no longer grow Sparkling Windflower, but if I had it, I would backcross RW to it and try to originate something more like the Windflower clan. And then search for an adjective to replace “red”. RW is rather widespreading. Fertile both ways. Presumed tet. I have one or two plants left in the garden after splitting two years ago. Nate Bremer may have a few. Walter Good has some,

A sibling from the same cross made several years ealier, LSW-1, has single red flowers, Laddie-type foliage, is very vigorous, has attractive foliage and looks especially good in the early stages of growth. I grew that one selection in the same spot for about 20 years under the increasing shade of a magnolia only a few feet away. After finally dividing it, Nate received some plants and made the cross LSW-1 x Tolomeo tenuifolia #4. He recently informed me that 29 seedlings are budding for this season. I presume the seedparent is a tet; I don’t know anything about Irene’s seedling. It sounds like it would be a dip, but then what accounts for the fertility of the cross.

Another sibling is LSW-6. This had Laddie-type foliage and short, stocky stems. I used its pollen on Roselegance to obtain RELSW6, to be registered as The Little Corporal (TLC). It has a large single red flower on a short stem, with the larger foliage typical of Salmon Dream. Nate has it, but otherwise it has had no distribution. It is a good seedsetter with tets, and I have mailed out seeds last season. Should have more this year. The progeny are moving away from any Windflower traits. It has 6 or 7 species in its family tree, according to research by Don Smith.

For anybody wanting to produce Windflower-type plants and flowers, I’d certainly try to get stock of Sparkling Windflower, and breed for white, pink, red, yellow, coral shades.

Bill Seidl

1 Comment
  1. Bob 6 months ago

    I’m working with the Windflowers here at my place. I just have one seedling I’ve bloomed so far, from Late Windflower x Lemon Chiffon, but unlike the LSW clan, it is indeed tall like the Windflowers, and has side buds under good growing conditions as the Windflowers do. Laddie would seem to be where the shortness comes from in the LSWs and The Little Corporal.

    Bill mentions crossing back to Sparkling Windflower, and I have indeed done that with the seedling mentioned above, and with luck it should be blooming next year. With Windflower (Early and Late) on both sides of this cross, I’m expecting even more of the Windflower qualities to be displayed, but in a seedling that’s tetraploid, and thus easier to work with than the presumably diploid Windflowers are.

    My sense is that it’s like Bill said : The further one strays away from the original Windflowers, the weaker their influence becomes.

    Bob Johnson

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