26 April 2014

Yellow snows - Autumn 2014 growouts

After a hectic few years, the coloured podded pea project is settling down a bit. I don't mean I've got to the end, but some goals are in sight, and clearer pathways to achieving them apparent.

I've learned a lot about what is achievable in a year - two generations is about all I can get with any reliability. And with the multitude of lines I'm growing, a smarter approach would have been to concentrate on doing one thing properly, before taking on a new project.

A good. yellow podded snow pea has been the easiest to achieve. My Tall Yellow Snow (TYS) project, a cross between Golden Podded what I think was Yakumo has produced 2 sibling lines that show promise.  The tentatively named Pixie Moon line is a tall yellow snow, with long and wide fibre free pods, and a cute curl in the bracts that subtend the flower and pods.

Pixie Moon on right

The other line, tentatively named Joni's Taxi is  big and yellow, on a robust plant, with a very long peduncle that holds the pods away from the stem, making them easy to see and pick. And JT seems to have one of the multi-flower genes, which is a bit of a bonus.

Half of the F5 seeds from each plant have been sown to allow for further selection, and to see if the traits are stable. I've held back half of each seed stock in case of calamity. With around 20 plants from each of the parents I should have sufficient material to judge for stability and select for the best plant from each line.

Here's part of last spring's F4 crop.

Another line of yellow snows is the Golden Spring project, resulting from a cross of Oregon Spring (which was a donation from a fellow grower, and which I can't find much information on) with Golden Podded. Here I was looking for a disease resistant, multi-flowered, short yellow snow. This has become the material being explored in our cooperative breeding program the Golden Spring Project. Keen readers can follow progress at the Ozgrow Australian Gardening forum.

Golden Spring is being grown from south east Queensland to western Victoria, so should be subject to a good range of selection pressures. We are growing the F3 generation this autumn.

One further line of yellows is Delta Gold, a cross of Golden Podded with Delta Louisa, a David Murray variety, which is short and disease resistant. Some of the Golden Spring growers got some F2 as a bonus - I miscalculated the number of growers for the Golden Spring, and had to make up a shortfall.

All of these are now growing in the garden, having been sown over the last month or so, so fingers crossed for some stable F5s.

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