Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Anthurium no. 1268 "Li'l Miss Hot Mess"

So finally we get an interesting one again. It's mostly interesting for who it's related to, not for its physical appearance, granted, but it's interesting, and something I hadn't seen before.

Li'l Miss Hot Mess is the first seedling from 'Midori' to bloom. I predicted in July 2014 that the best-case scenario was for a 'Midori' seedling to bloom in January 2016, and it actually took one year more than that (first bud in December 2016; first actual bloom in February 2017). It looked like this:

Which I'll be the first to say that that's not incredible or anything. I'd been hoping for something closer to 'Midori' itself, with solid green, large, heavily blistered spathes,

but I suppose white with green "ears" is arguably more interesting and ornamental. Looks more like a flower, you know. 'Midori' mostly just confused people.1

Li'l Miss Hot Mess has turned out to be unusually difficult to photograph, both because the camera doesn't know what to do with the white spathe on a black background, and because they've had very short, wide, asymmetrical spathes that flipped back from the spadix as they aged, making it difficult for the camera to figure out where to focus, and difficult for me to find an angle that shows the weird proportions accurately.

(the second bloom)

I've also managed to pollinate this seedling,

(also the second bloom, about five weeks later)

which isn't necessarily going to lead to anything, but: since the last thing I said on the subject was that I'd stopped trying to pollinate the Anthuriums at all because I was depressed, angry, and discouraged by all the bugs and diseases, I thought it counted as news anyway.

As far as foliage goes, 'Midori' produced a relatively small number of large leaves, and the leaves were waxier than the typical seedling;2 both 'Midori' seedlings to bud so far have done the same.3

The shorter, wider spathes happened to several seedlings lately. I'm not sure that it's necessarily bad, but the first seedling I remember doing this, 0063 Audrey Quest, later produced more normally-proportioned spathes, so this makes me think that it has an environmental cause. The seedlings that have done this are physically near one another (1268 Li'l Miss Hot Mess and 1209 Raven Samore Holiday are on the same shelf; 1224, 1299, and 1373 share a shelf also), but I can't figure out what all five have in common. Maybe it doesn't mean anything. Maybe it's another odd thing first blooms will sometimes do, and the location thing is coincidence.

Anyway. Obviously a keeper; hopefully it will give me more interesting seedlings in the future.


1 Past tense, because 'Midori' has since died. The cause of death wasn't clear, but I think it was too wet, too dry, or somehow both at once. I'm increasingly convinced that Anthuriums are capable of being both too dry and too wet simultaneously.
2 It's not usually noticeable in person, but all Anthuriums produce some wax on their leaves, and mainly I notice it when editing photos; waxy leaves wind up looking bluer. 0426 Zelda Zizzle is a good example of a seedling with waxy-looking leaves.
3 The other 'Midori' seedling to bud is 1103 Valeria T., which has even bigger, waxier leaves, and doesn't look like it's going to have a large, solid green, symmetrical, blistered spathe either. My fingers are crossed for something 'Midori'-like, but so far, Valeria looks like possibly another yellow-tan, like 1299 Sinthia D Meanor. I could be happy with that too: Sinthia's the most interesting seedling all year.
Li'l Miss Hot Mess and Valeria have a lot of pressure on them to keep 'Midori's genetic legacy going; only four 'Midori' seedlings are still alive.
1033 Phoenix (weak)
1092 Mia Amor (weak)
1093 Luna Stones (dry)
1094 Ella Vawaydego (dry)
1101 India Vent (weak)
1102 Eden Fertu (weak)
1103 Valeria T.
1104 Angel F. DeMornay (dry)
1105 Amy Vodkahaus (accidentally buried under potting soil during watering and didn't bounce back when uncovered)
1268 Li'l Miss Hot Mess
1357 Dayonna Hilton
1476 Anya


Pauri said...

Does the thicker waxy coating make the leaves more thrip resistant?

Wonder if your Midori was too wet at eh center of the pot but too dry otherwise?

mr_subjunctive said...


Does the thicker waxy coating make the leaves more thrip resistant?

Doesn't particularly seem to. (This may be partly because the thrips favor young, developing leaves over mature leaves. I assume the newer leaves don't have a full wax coating yet.)

Wonder if your Midori was too wet at eh center of the pot but too dry otherwise?

My best guess on that one is that I skipped a watering when it wanted one, such that the roots died back partly, and then when I did water, the partly-dead roots were overwhelmed and rotted. I know that happens sometimes with Spathiphyllum, though I don't see it very much among the Anthuriums so maybe not. I do remember having to make a decision about whether to water 'Midori' or not, deciding no, and then feeling later like I probably should have gone ahead and watered.

Lil Miss Hot Mess said...

Curious how you came up with the name? (From one LMHM to another...)

mr_subjunctive said...

Lil Miss Hot Mess:

It is, in fact, a reference to you. Or your stage persona, anyway.

I've been naming the seedlings after drag queens since they started blooming, mostly as a way to help me remember who was who. Over time, as I started to wonder if I was going to run out of names, I've expanded this to: drag kings (0365 Murray Hill); made-up, mostly pun-based, drag queen (e.g. 0241 Megan Gigaterra) and king (0091 Bob Sharunkle) names; trans men and women, particularly if they've been drag performers at some point in their life (0446 Venus Xtravaganza); faux queens (0527 Ms. Lucia Love); and notable gender-bending performers whether they think of what they do as drag or not (0892 Eddie Izzard).

Oh, and there have also been some roller derby names in the mix, too (0275 Yvette Horizon), 'cause there's more overlap between roller derby and drag than most people would expect.

As far as I know, you, JizzaBella (seedling 0457), and Peaches Christ (seedling 0026) are the only queens who are actually aware that you've had a seedling; yours is the only seedling that's still with me. (Most of the seedlings are crap, and the names are assigned more or less randomly, before I have any idea what the mature plants are going to look like. So good people/performers/queens end up with bad seedlings all the time.) But if you name a queen, there's a good chance that there's been a seedling by that name at some point or another.

(Hope this is cool with you.)