john gault
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Hybrids of hybrids

It seems like everything we grow is a genetically modified hybrid created (cultivated) by some very smart people somewhere, a good example of this is the tomato. But is there a seed we buy that has not been bred? What about the native plants we buy at nurseries, from my understanding many of them are cultivated are there any species that are not, but are widely sold?

Maybe I'm misunderstanding what exactly it means when a plant is "cultivated". I know hybrids happen naturally, but isn't cultivated and hybrid the same thing, the major difference being that cultivated is when humans purposely get involved and control the process?

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It's a whole can of worms John.
Hybrids do occure in nature and most species have evolved because of it. But it is a long slow game so breeders speed up the process and also cross breed plant characteristics that are particularly needed and not just random choices.
In some breeding plants are deliberatly bred to be Triploids...these carry an uneven number of chromosomes and are therefors reluctant or unable to produce seed...many bananas, water melon, and citrus.. etc.
Strange too that if many hybrids are left to get on and breed on their own with the ' wild ' plants the resulting offspring can return to its more ' natural ' state quite quickly.
Anyone who has tried planting apple seeds will quickly find many produce fruits more like the original Crab than the Domestica that we like.

:?
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tomc
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Re: Hybrids of hybrids

john gault wrote:It seems like everything we grow is a genetically modified hybrid created (cultivated) by some very smart people somewhere,
Um selections based on taste, fruit size, or color; are breeding techniques. Inasmuch as no genetic material is added at the labratory stage--no this is not a geneticaly modified plant.
johm gault wrote:Maybe I'm misunderstanding what exactly it means when a plant is "cultivated". I know hybrids happen naturally, but isn't cultivated and hybrid the same thing, the major difference being that cultivated is when humans purposely get involved and control the process?
The genetic peril most comonly encountered by standard breeding and selection, is inbreeding depression. To simplify: if there aint many branches on your family tree, some of your children will show hybrid vigor, others will show hybrid depression. Also dependency can be a common result.

Zea Maize is a classic example of dependency. If people don't plant corn, it will become extinct.

Mixing terms by blending in GMO technology into standard breeding technique is at best misleading.

Hm, I hope I'm taking some of the fog off and not being too scolding. The site owner has my blessing to delete this post. We is snuggling right hard up against the 'no politics' caveat of this site.
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john gault
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Re: Hybrids of hybrids

tomc wrote:Zea Maize is a classic example of dependency. If people don't plant corn, it will become extinct.

Mixing terms by blending in GMO technology into standard breeding technique is at best misleading.

Hm, I hope I'm taking some of the fog off and not being too scolding. The site owner has my blessing to delete this post. We is snuggling right hard up against the 'no politics' caveat of this site.
I don't see the politics in my question, nor in your response. My question was simply about breeding and how it changes the genetic makeup, both naturally accuring and by the hand of a breeder.

Like you said, if people don't plant corn it will go extinct. That's just one example of it being genetically different. I'm sure there are other cultivated plants that would do just fine. But as JONA878, said, it's a can of worms, I understand that, because of the complexity of the issue combined with my ignorance of the issue.

I do read about this stuff, but it's hard to get a book with my specific questions, seems like everything I read just breeds more questions, but that's probably more a result of not having good sources in this area.

So let's take it one question at a time: Is plant cultivation the same as hybridization? The primary difference being that cultivation is done purposefully, where as hybridization is by accident, for lack of a better word, no? It sure seems that way when I read these two links, but I just want to get others take on the issue. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultivar https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybrid_(biology)#Hybrid_plants

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!potatoes!
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'cultivation' at its most basic, in this usage, really just means the intentional growing of plants, and doesn't say anything about any sex going on (which, of course, is what leads to hybrids).

consider that many perennial plants we grow reproduce asexually, generation after generation. no hybridization going on there.

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Yeah, the language gets confusing. I agree that cultivation really just means growing and caring for plants. It does not mean producing (new) cultivars, which are separate varieties and which are produced through hybridization.

But to answer your original question, yes I think there are lots of native wildflower seeds sold that have not been hybridized, just cultivated (i.e. grown commercially and cared for and harvested).

i.e.

https://www.edenbrothers.com/store/butterfly_weed_seeds.html
asclepias tuberosa aka butterfly weed/ milkweed is the original native version of this plant and is widely sold by seed and plants as is.


But some of these have also been hybridized. I think here

https://www.swallowtailgardenseeds.com/perennials/butterfly_weed_peren.html

the "gay butterflies" is a hybrid variety of asclepias tuberosa, which has been bred for different colors.
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Cultivation: the act of preparing soil and seeding an area, is not hybridization. It brings a plant into a specific area for human pleasure or consumption.

Hyrbidization: is the mechanical selective addition of pollen to create specific (or at least hoped for) changes. It adds nothing that doesn't already exist in a plant, but simply creates reproducable known (and naturaly occuring) qualities in a controlled basis.

Genetic modification--GMO: is done in-laboritory and often adds non-plant material at the sub-cellular level.

Grafting: the mechanical attachement of two closely similar plants. Oh an example might be one of the known Malling apple rootstocks with top-wood of a known and desirable table apple. There is no exchange of genetic material in the two grafted plants, just the top can grow no bigger than the feet permit.
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tomc
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Re: Hybrids of hybrids

john gault wrote:It seems like everything we grow is a genetically modified hybrid created (cultivated) by some very smart people somewhere, a good example of this is the tomato. But is there a seed we buy that has not been bred? What about the native plants we buy at nurseries, from my understanding many of them are cultivated are there any species that are not, but are widely sold?
Now lets go back to the venerable and often intentionally managed tomato.

Tomato without belaboring it as a wild plant. Is a perfect blooming plant. What that means is left un-aided by pollinators a tomato will make pretty much the same plant generation after generation. All its pollination happens naturally without the need of others, inside the flower.

Intentional breeding ot tomato has pollen from one plant added to another slightly different tomato by opening the flower and adding another (tomato plants) pollen. Seed from that intentional breeding is then grown out and the best of the next generations plant is saved.

That selection proccess usually takes six to ten generations to fully stabilize, with subsequent selections made at each generation.

When all is said and done our new tomato plant is able to grow its merry way mostly unaided.

The 'new' tomato is still only an open pollinated example.

I'll leave it to others to do the tutorial for F1 hybrids.

Tomato is quite able when the season is long enough to self sow. And can live on as it did in the andean highlands, with nary a human hand at the rototiller.
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john gault
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Re: Hybrids of hybrids

tomc wrote:
john gault wrote:It seems like everything we grow is a genetically modified hybrid created (cultivated) by some very smart people somewhere, a good example of this is the tomato. But is there a seed we buy that has not been bred? What about the native plants we buy at nurseries, from my understanding many of them are cultivated are there any species that are not, but are widely sold?
Now lets go back to the venerable and often intentionally managed tomato.

Tomato without belaboring it as a wild plant. Is a perfect blooming plant. What that means is left un-aided by pollinators a tomato will make pretty much the same plant generation after generation. All its pollination happens naturally without the need of others, inside the flower.

Intentional breeding ot tomato has pollen from one plant added to another slightly different tomato by opening the flower and adding another (tomato plants) pollen. Seed from that intentional breeding is then grown out and the best of the next generations plant is saved.

That selection proccess usually takes six to ten generations to fully stabilize, with subsequent selections made at each generation.

When all is said and done our new tomato plant is able to grow its merry way mostly unaided.

The 'new' tomato is still only an open pollinated example.

I'll leave it to others to do the tutorial for F1 hybrids.

Tomato is quite able when the season is long enough to self sow. And can live on as it did in the andean highlands, with nary a human hand at the rototiller.
Tomato is a good example, because I've read that the wild tomato is basically inedible. And there are tons of cultivars all a result of human intervention, dating back before Columbus. So any "wild" tomato one may come across is actually an "escapee", i.e. it's a result of human breeding.

However, from what I understand the Banana, which is also basically inedible in the wild, is the result of humans coming across a natural hybrid, although there are many cultivars today.

Basically, what that tells me is that there is no agriculture without purposeful breeding.

But I see I'm just going to have to find something really good that covers this topic, either a website or a book, my problem is, is that so much that I've read expects the reader to have a certain amount of experience, and I have virtually none.



This is one of the questions that popped in my head that started me down this line of questioning.

I have Cosmos in my yard that have spread without my intervention, other than planting the seeds earlier this year. Now suppose I want to buy some other varieties of Cosmos could this lead to a new "cultivar/hybrid" (I use these terms loosely since I'm still struggling to understand the differences, if any. BTW, I would not purposefully attempt to breed a new plant, but I have tons of bees here virtually everyday, so they'd do it.

BTW, how do you know if something is a F1 hybrid (as I understand it that means it's unable to produce offspring). Is this something put on the seed package?

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!potatoes!
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yup. seed packet should say, but many don't. an F1 plant isn't necessarily unable to produce offspring, either, it's just very unlikely to be true from it's seeds (the kids won't look like mom).

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Tomato is quite able when the season is long enough to self sow. And can live on as it did in the andean highlands, with nary a human hand at the rototiller.

As TomC wrote........


Go to any sewage works and see how true that statement is.
They are very good at selfseeding anywhere that they get the chance.

:)
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john gault
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JONA878 wrote:Tomato is quite able when the season is long enough to self sow. And can live on as it did in the andean highlands, with nary a human hand at the rototiller.

As TomC wrote........


Go to any sewage works and see how true that statement is.
They are very good at selfseeding anywhere that they get the chance.

:)
I'm sure they are. Which brings to mind another question. Bananas are basically sterile, but they produce suckers, after planting just one, others will pop up. So what's the difference between a "sucker" and offspring?

Are suckers, genetically, exact duplicates? And how far can they travel?

The other day I say a banana plant growing right near a drainage ditch. No one planted that there, I just can't see that. And they don't seed, so how did it get there?

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Suckers are indeed genetic 'copies' of the parent. That's how all apples, pears etc are reproduced to get identical lineage.


Cuttings ( scions ). bud grafts or cell culture in the lab are the only way that you can be sure that the trees grow true to the genetic footprint of the original parent.
Research Centres do regular checks that vars are running true.

Some plants have been hibridised so that they have ceased to produce seed anyway.
Many bananas and citrus for eg. where pips would be a darn nuisance.
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If you make equal every phrase of: not true to type, variability, unplatable, and equal to poisonous. There is little reason to go outside, or to smell the flowers.

I mean who knows, a stray ultraviolet ray might gettcha.

The difference between a "fox" grape, and a "Concord" grape, is the "Concord" make a few more, bigger, grapes and bunches of grapes than the "Fox" does.

This purple seeded berry Is common over most of the east coast. Just about every indigenous pollinator gets a little fuel for breeding this grape.

Many humans kept off dietary defficiency eating fox grapes, Nature goes on about its messy fecund business, irregardless of what we think about her.

It is more than possible that out of two people one will find either pawpaw (or) cilantro unpalatible; and the other may find either or both yummy as heck. The likers and yukkers are both right. Neither gets poisoned.

Life is messy, step around the puddles.
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john gault
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tomc wrote:...Nature goes on about its messy fecund business, irregardless of what we think about her.
Maybe so, but these questions are about agriculture and plant breeding.

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tomc wrote: Life is messy, step around the puddles.
or just wear boots.

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