Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Anthurium no. 0537 "Bridgette of Madison County"

One hundred twenty-eight seedlings have bloomed so far, as I write this, and there is a strong argument to be made that Bridgette is the very worst one. This is the prettiest photo I could get, of the prettiest bloom she's produced so far:

But this is a lot more representative of what Bridgette actually does:

The spathe never opens fully, probably because half of it is brown and dead by the time it's mature enough to try. I've seen thrips on it, though I'm not sure that they're what causes the dead patches on the spathes -- the thrips population has declined since I started blasting the plants with water, but Bridgette's spathes are still coming out partly dead.

Even if the spathe burn could be worked out somehow, the blooms are tiny,1 and not a great color.2 The plant is a relatively fast bloomer, but whatever it might gain in enthusiasm, it loses in follow-through.

The leaves have been variable in quality. Overall, they're better than you'd expect from the blooms, but they don't have any notable positive qualities: not shiny, pleasingly-colored, blemish-free, or large. They do tend to be longer and narrower than average. This one's pretty typical:

And the plant as a whole:

So, yeah. Pretty obviously not a keeper, and in fact probably in a landfill by the time you read this. My hope is that when I recycle the name, Bridgette of Madison County II will be prettier. 'Cause I do really like the name.


1 The scale is hard to determine from my closely-cropped photos, I realize. The bloom in the first photo of this post measures 1 1/8 inches tall by 5/8 inches wide (2.9 cm x 1.6 cm). Average size for one of the Anthurium blooms is roughly 2 inches tall by 1 1/2 inches wide (5.1 x 3.8 cm).
2 In theory there's nothing wrong with a white to light pink spathe coupled with a lavender-pink spadix, I guess; it's not a combination that's appeared in the seedlings before. But combining one really common thing with another really common thing is hard to get excited about, even if the combination's never been seen before.
I mean, I don't think I've ever seen a picture of Michelle Obama eating a pie, but I've seen plenty of pictures of pies, and plenty of pictures of Michelle Obama. I think it's safe to predict that I would not be blown away by an Obama/pie combination, however unprecedented in my experience it might be. More so if the photo were half-burnt and tiny.


orchideya said...

Too bad about Bridgette, I personally liked the color combination. Pink pastel colors different from pushy dark red commonly sold here in the stores. But of course with so many seedlings you want to keep the best performing ones.

Paul said...

Personally I like the "pushy dark reds" -- provided it has a very broad, flat spathe. LOL. :)

Too bad about Brigette. In that most recent photo, I like how the color starts out fairly deep along the bottom edge of the spathe then fades gradually out as it goes up. Unfortunately, that is her only redeeming quality. Definitely compost material.

mr_subjunctive said...


0544 Ida Claire Warren has a little of that happening as well, though Ida isn't much better than Bridgette and doesn't have the lavender spadices.

Not anticipating any similarly-colored seedlings in the near future, and there aren't any similar buds at the moment, but 0535 Barb Dwyer produced a very light pink or white bud in December (then aborted it), and if the color proportions from the BH group continue like they've been so far, there's another white/lavender in there somewhere. So maybe a couple more chances at an improved Bridgette.

And if not, well, there are all the other sibling groups to look at. Group CB is about twice as large as BH, and also has 'White Gemini' as the seed parent. Plus there are all the second-generation seedlings, one of which has already tried to bud once (0687 Pauline Pantsdown, daughter of 0273 Wes Coast). Supposedly things get more variable once you hit the second generation.

Paul said...

It's unfortunate you did not keep track of who was crossed with whom (though I do realize that would have been a LOT of work). Would have been interesting, I think -- as well as potentially very useful to your efforts-- if such data resulted in indications of which plants made for undesirable parents/passé on undesirable traits.