Monday, January 11, 2016

Schlumbergera seedling no. 102

102A has, I think, only produced two blooms so far, which isn't really enough to go on as far as determining whether it's a good seedling or a bad one or what. 030A "Diwali" sucked for an entire year before straightening itself out, after all. And sometimes flowers just don't photograph well. But so far . . . I'm not that impressed.

After 17 pages of TinEye results, plus two names from the emergency list, I managed to get 37 name options, of which eight seemed like they could be serious contenders. In the order I managed to eliminate them from consideration:

I'm afraid we're going to have to go a couple of generations before Judith regains its mythological associations. Everybody loves a woman who can perform a solid beheading when necessary, but the name currently makes me think mostly of an acquaintance from college (who seems unlikely to ever behead anybody though I suppose you never know) and Rick Grimes' baby in The Walking Dead (who hasn't either, being an infant, though given her circumstances I imagine she's a lot more likely to do so eventually than college Judy). And if we're going to name seedlings after anybody from The Walking Dead, it should be Michonne.1 (So what the hell: let's add Michonne to the emergency names list.)

Gamma Ray feels almost right, but it should be a different color than this. Like a weird blue-purple, or maybe a science fiction yellowish green. Red-orange is way too normal.

"Shipyard," one of the tags on this photo, brought to mind Shipbuilding, the Elvis Costello song, which I considered for a little while. Unfortunately for the name, this also inspired me to pay attention to the lyrics, which are depressing. (Timely! Always timely! But depressing!) And just seeing the word gets the song stuck in my head badly besides. So I'm going to hurry past Shipbuilding and hope that it doesn't get stuck in my head again.

Tokyo works in the same way that Alberta did, long ago, for seedling 054B: the color fits in some way that makes sense to me even though I can't explain why. There's at least one name I like better for this one, though, and the seedling isn't otherwise connected to Japan, so we'll pass on Tokyo.

I really like the photo on Glass Heart for some reason, and I don't even mind getting "Heart of Glass" stuck in my head, but it seems to me like a Glass Heart Schlumbergera should have a stronger contrast between the petals and tube. A red and white flower, maybe.

Easter Island (or Rapa Nui, the native name) aren't terribly interesting on their own, name-wise (though the photo is cute), but I wound up down a wikihole for quite a while, learning bits and pieces about Rapa Nui and its history. What matters for this post, though, is that the Rapa Nui language has a quirk that I found interesting, which is that in at least some (if not all) cases, doubling a word makes a new, related word. So kume, which means to undo, can become kumekume, to take to pieces. Ako, to sing or recite, turns into ákoáko, to recite hymns in honor of a deity. Some Googling turned up a Rapanui-English dictionary, so I looked around for any Rapanui words that might cover this color, but I didn't really find any -- they seem to have a lot of words for red,2 but I'm not sure any of them imply reddish-orange plus pink. Maybe Hegahega, I suppose, if it's related to the red of dawn.

The last name I've got is Casino, which is awfully generic (Which casino? What about the casino?), but appropriate in a couple ways: one, casinos tend to have a lot of red, yellow, and orange in them, and two, I don't know what the later blooms are going to look like. I mean, I can guess the color easily enough, but it hasn't produced enough blooms for me to have a sense as to whether it's going to be one of the good seedlings or bad seedlings, so keeping the seedling around at all is, in a very (very!) loose sense, a gamble.

Initially, because of the ambiguity of the seedling's quality, and the color, my intention was to go with Casino, but the more I think about it, the more I feel like the name would need to be a little more specific for Casino to work. ______ Casino, or Casino ______, something like that. And anyway Hegahega is a more interesting word, I think. (I could combine the two, as Hegahega Casino, but that doesn't really make "casino" any more appealing to me.)

So I have managed to eliminate the entire original list of options. Whoops. There are still Hegahega and Michonne, I suppose, but if those are my choices, it's no contest. I sort of hate to name a seedling of questionable quality after Michonne, who deserves a seedling of obvious awesomeness, but maybe it will, like, motivate the seedling to be better if it has to live up to the name.


1 I have not yet seen the most recent half-season of The Walking Dead. If you have, and Michonne has become less awesome, please let me know about this without spoiling me as to how she's become less awesome.
2 Hegahega (reddish, ruddy; maybe related to hehega, to dawn?); herohero (crimson, bright red, also the ripe color of any fruit); mea / meamea (light red, rose); retoreto (bright red, flaming red); úraúra (bright red; possibly related to ûra, to flame, blaze, or become furious?)


Diana at Garden on the Edge said...

If I told people that you blog about possible names options for your Schlumbergera they would probably not be interested. But I find I almost always have to head over to Wikipedia because I learned something (or you referred to something I want to learn more about). Which is awesome. I love to learn stuff.

Yes, I'm not just a plant nerd, I'm also an intellectual nerd.

Rhonda Grace said...

Hey Mr Subj. I don't know if you remember me (Mentha) but we used to haunt GW at the same time way back when. I'm so glad to see you're keeping the blog going. I can't tell you how many times I've come here for something or another and not close my browser until hours later forgetting why I came in the first place. I am loving all the Schlum pictures. Schlumbergera is like #4 favorite plant of mine of all time.

mr_subjunctive said...

Diana at Garden on the Edge:

Yeah, as repetitive as they can get sometimes (there was some party in an orange-red room in Germany that shows up basically every single search, over and over, and I am so tired of the partying Germans), TinEye results can be literally anything that anyone in the world has ever thought interesting enough to take a picture of, which is a lot of the reason I'm still doing the posts like this, 'cause I wind up tracking down a few random things every time I name a seedling. Everything is interesting if you try hard enough.

Rhonda Grace:

Sure I remember you. Thanks for saying something. What are the #1-3 plants, though?

Rhonda Grace said...

Well, it's hard to say because a lot of plants are my favorite at different times but I'll try to give a few that seem to stay in the top 10 at least.... Mint of any flavor of course would be one, can't be a Mentha without loving mint. Rhipsalis and Epiphyllum and their tribes would be another, Monstera deliciosa and other vining aroids would be the third. I'm not as fond of Easter cactus though. Hoyas hold a soft spot in my heart, but I don't have many of them. Heirloom tomatoes and peppers for outside plants. I'm sure there are more but most of all my favorite plant is the new one I just snuck past the husband's plant radar, whatever that may be at any given time and the one that has stayed the long haul.