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Telephone x Purple Podded

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  • Telephone x Purple Podded

    Another Rainbow Pea, hopefully. I thought some purple pods might be nice in the mix, and I'd like a nicer-tasting purple too. I love the way Purple Podded looks, but it's really nothing special flavour-wise. We can do better than that.

    Telephone's a great pea. It's really tall and productive and the peas taste lovely. Flowers are white, and seeds originally came from Real Seeds.

    Purple Podded was gifted to me about 8 years ago by a lovely blogger called Celia (in fact her blog is called Purple Podded Peas). I often grow it because the dark purple pods are so striking. It's about 5' and has purple flowers.

    This one's a slightly more complicated cross because I think I'm looking for a combination of three dominant alleles - Puand Pur combine to make fully purple pods, but I also need A to allow the plant to produce anthocyanins in the first place. I'm assuming Telephone is aa because it shows no antho in the plant at all, but there's an outside chance that it has a gene for white flowers instead. The F2 should tell me which it is. I suppose it could have both, but that's unlikely and I'm not going to worry about it.

    Realistically the dominant traits mean it might take a while to stabilise this one. If I'm looking for a recessive trait I can easily tell which plants are homozygous for that allele because they'll be the only plants showing that trait, and I can select them. But with a dominant trait, some plants will be homozygous and some heterozygous and there's no way to tell which is which until the next generation...

    But the fact that peas self-pollinate actually helps me out here. I can do some culling, but mostly I'll rely on the plants themselves to do a lot of the work for me.

    Imagine for a sec I only care about the A gene. We'll see the standard Mendelian ratio in the F2 of 1/4 AA, 2/4 Aa, 1/4 aa. The homozygous plants (AA and aa) will self-pollinate and breed true in future generations, so half of our plants have already stabilised in respect to this gene. The heterozygotes will also self, and each one will produce the same Mendelian ratio in the F3 that we saw in the F2. So half of their offspring will be homozygous and breed true, and half won't. The proportion of heterozygotes in the population will half every generation until it's pretty much negligible after 7 generations or so, which is stable enough.

    And this will happen with all 3 of the genes I'm looking at, without me having to really do anything, just because peas self. All I plan to do is cull any plants that don't have purple pods every year because I will never get purple pods from them.

    I expect 27/64 of my F2 to have fully-purple pods. Since I'm looking for such a common phenotype I can get away with sowing far fewer seeds, but I'll probably still sow a good number just to have a bit more diversity in the population. Possibly about 50 or 60, I think.

  • #2
    Very good luck with this one - hope you have a more straightforward journey to fully purple pods than I am traversing. Will watch with great interest.


    • #3
      I'm not finding purple pods straight forward either!


      • #4
        Better tasting purple pods would be so good, but I guess the flavour is tied up in the colour?

        ps Good luck.


        • #5
          I guess we'll find out!

          I'm thinking that there are a lot of genes involved in flavour, and while a purple isn't ever going to taste as good as a non-purple we should be able to improve it.


          • #6
            I think for me, the anthocyanin has a flavour, some say they can't detect it, but I reckon I can and find it slightly bitter in peas. To have a purple that doesn't have that 'twang' would be choice.


            • #7
              I can definitely taste antho. I grew out some Shiraz last year it was definitely more bitter than green-podded types.

              There's other things that can be improved though, like the amount of sugar in the peas. That should help the taste a lot.


              • #8
                Yes many of the purple podded ones I've tried are quite plain in the sugary scale, some are very sweet early on but soon lose it as the pods fill out and the 'antho' kicks in. Also most of the seeds are of a paler green than some of their green podded cousins? Could this be linked to antho or sweetness or lack of it?


                • #9
                  Just thought I'd mention that Purple Pod has got huge yields, because there are ten seeds in many of the pods. Not the best in the flavour stakes, but this high yield might come through in any breeding with PP. And my PP F2s last year had several plants with an enormous amount of sideshoots. Kept on producing for ages until all the sideshoots were done and crispy. Crosses with a sweeter pea (Court Estate Gold in my case), and the resulting mangetouts were nice eating too.

                  Not sure about tasting antho - my palate isn't that sophisticated, but I like a strong flavour over insipid and anything with antho is strong tasting. I thought there was too much of a good thing in Helsing Junction Blues, but it was a case of waiting and letting them get fully ripe, then tasting again. And they tasted so good - addictive!
                  Last edited by Galina; 08-04-2016, 09:46.


                  • #10
                    Yes, I actually don't mind that antho twang at all as long as it's balanced with other flavours. Love HJB!

                    Most purple podded peas seem to be starchy soup pea types, with high levels of sugar initially which turns to starch fairly early. I think it's that that makes Purple Podded not the best for eating fresh.

                    More sugars should improve the flavour, but like you say Galina it needs something more than just sweet, it needs other flavour elements to be strong enough to balance it.

                    High yielding would be good. Telephone isn't bad either, always seems to make loads of pods even though it's a little on the late side. And it's REALLY tall!


                    • #11
                      There is more to purple pods than just A Pur and Pu. Early in my breeding i grew full purples, and what I called mauves - purple dusting in various degrees. I initially thought the mauves were missing either Pur or Pu, but subsequent generations gave full purples. I'm pretty sure there are modifier genes at play. A shortcut for some growouts with purples is to cull the small plants without purple splashed axils - you may be eliminating some purples without the axil coloration gene, but at least you know the purple axil plants are carrying A. I plant all of my growout seeds into little jiffy peat pots, grow them on until the first few leaf sets appear, and select then. Dwarfing, semileaflessness (=hyper-tendril), and gg (=yellow pod) phenotypes show up enough that I can select fairly reliably, and then only plant out to the garden those that meet my criteria - My aspirations always exceed my growing space, so row space is always at a premium, and seeds are usually plentiful after the F1.


                      • #12
                        Trixy modifiers, just when I think I'm starting to get a hang of it!


                        • Galina
                          Galina commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Not only does the Pur gene come in 4 different alleles, which doesn't help, goodness knows how these modifiers work. No wonder it is so hard to get a good purple/good red. Some of it may be linked to other genes too - seems to be easier to get the full colour in shelling peas than in mangetouts or snaps.

                          So pleased you have a good reliable purple Templeton. I am looking forward to seeing it pop out here in F3 and further generations (but my expectations have lowered).

                      • #13
                        Yep, it's complicated all right! And Pur is unstable as well, very prone to doing weird things.

                        One of my Golden Sweet x Purple Podded F1 plants last year produced amazing purple pods spotted with green, totally unexpected. My theory is that Pur mutated into Pur>a...


                        • #14
                          Nothing much to report here. F3 was mostly purple and semi-purple, with very few green pods or white flowers. I keep culling everything that isn’t purple, and this year I plan to be even more strict about selecting darker pods.

                          It might take a while to get rid of the recessive green pods, but at least it’s easy! Just eat all the peas in green pods and save the purples.