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  • Double crossed

    Last time I had grown Romanian beans from HSL was in 2016, definitely time to seed renew this year and or next year. There are so many beans this year, so I only put 6 seeds into a larger size square pot for planting out later. All germinated. Romanian are white seeded and I only had white seeds.

    At planting out time I already had an inkling that something might be amiss, when one stem was reddish and another purple, but in they went. Now that the plants are reaching the tops of the 8ft poles, all has become clear. We have a double cross, well two crosses actually. One plant is enormous, well over the top of the pole and is purple flowered. Also, talk about hybrid vigour, it has at least a pound of half green half purple little beans on it already.

    The plant with the reddish stem is also crossed and it is quite clear from the colour of the flowers that the pollen donor must have been a runnerbean. If I get a minute I'll check with the garden book which runners I grew in 2016. Predictably no set pods yet, and none on Romanian yet either. Crosses with runnerbeans make few pods that ripen late - from previous experience - and have often misshapen black seeds of varying size in them.

    To see two crossed plants from such a small sample is quite unusual and a French as well as a Runnerbean cross makes for very pretty photos.


    Click image for larger version  Name:	romanian.JPG Views:	0 Size:	78.1 KB ID:	14708 Click image for larger version  Name:	romanian and crosses.JPG Views:	0 Size:	118.2 KB ID:	14709 Click image for larger version  Name:	romanian and crossses.JPG Views:	0 Size:	71.9 KB ID:	14710 Click image for larger version  Name:	romanian crosses.JPG Views:	0 Size:	130.2 KB ID:	14711
    Last edited by Galina; 18-07-2021, 10:10.

  • #2
    You do have a knack for finding Frenchie Runner crosses!
    Loving the red flower pictures and they look so good twining with the white and purple flowers, so pretty. I've yet to find a cross like it, one year maybe.
    Bonus, the purple flowered cross looks like it will be adding a useful harvest.

    Comment


    • Galina
      Galina commented
      Editing a comment
      Ah, but it wasn't me as such, but lots of earth wasps in Rushden, which no doubt did their bit biting into the back of these flowers and cross pollinating all sorts.
      Last edited by Galina; 18-07-2021, 15:15.

  • #3
    Lovely! How fortuitous. Many thanks to the earth wasps.
    Romanian might be one of those varieties prone to crossing up, like Fat Goose, or so I've read. 1/3 are crosses in this small sample - there may be more hidden in the rest of the batch!

    Comment


    • #4
      It could well be the case. I have just fixed a blossom bag around an unopened flower truss of Romanian to be guaranteed pure seeds. Maybe a second to follow. I am still evaluating what next door's bees might do crossing wise, so at least one baggie per bean to guarantee pure seeds may be the way to go. And maybe this is just paranoia on my part. Will have to get to the old garden book and see what was growing next to Romanian.

      I am growing 2 crosses this year of my Infra beans, now well established in the F4, we will see how they stabilise further. It is fun following up crosses. Infra are Indiana Banana x Berner Landfrauen, a pure yellow that got accidentally crossed with a green purple striped bean by my seed donor of both varieties. Last year's Infra 4 were fabulous, so I am growing them again and also Infra 14 with its yellow red striped pods (well they were when grown last) but the stems are yellow, so I hope that feature is stable. I love following up crosses. And there is just that bit of extra thrill to interspecies crosses.

      Comment


      • #5
        How exciting. Looking forward to further reports as they develop.

        I have two hives and one wild nest of honey bees in fairly close proximity to the vegetable garden and never a cross appearing yet. My bees must be exceptionally lazy!

        Comment


        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          I must say that I haven't seen any bees on them, they are working the clover in the garden. But I have seen them trying to get into the peas.

        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          We have pods. A number of Romanian were straw dry already. I have taken the first pods indoors as we are away for a bit and I want to make sure of some seeds, rather than finding pods have opened and scattered on our return. Firstly, the purple ones have very pale seeds at this stage almost indistinguishable from the white Romanian seeds. Glad I have kept them separate but I expect they will darken. No such potential confusing seeds issue with the runnerbean cross. We have several short pods with one to three seeds, but I have not opened any yet as they are maturing later. These pods have the distinctive runnerbean roughness on the outside, and a darker green, very easy to tell apart from the Romanian with smooth and longer pods..
          Last edited by Galina; 02-09-2021, 08:26.

        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          The purple podded cross has remained a really nice green eating quality bean. With string, but every bit as good as Blauhilde and there were dozens of them. Hard to believe it was just one plant. I wonder what the F2s will bring, but suspect good culinary qualities. Romanian is a drying bean first and foremost. Haven't eaten any of the much fewer runner cross pods with St George. There are not that many and they are short. A handful of F2 interspecies seeds would be nice.

      • #6
        Looked it up in the book and it appears that the runner bean grown in 2016 was St George. And yes also Romanian. Must have put the rest of the seeds in the freezer for another year and promptly forgotten that I had ever grown these. Can't have been too memorable a variety

        The other runnerbean that might have been a possible candidate to cause bicolour blooms in the cross, would have been Painted Lady. I had my first ever interspecies cross with PL, but this one is clearly St G as no PL grown that year. St G is also a bicolour runner bean. Just read that St G is an 'improved' version of PL.

        The purple bean grown was Viola Cornetti. Nice to have an idea of who both parents were. Purple beans are known to have a slightly higher crossing tendency (including also with runner beans).


        Last edited by Galina; 23-07-2021, 09:08.

        Comment


        • jayb
          jayb commented
          Editing a comment
          I utterly admire your note taking skills and abillity to locate said book with notes

          I think it makes it a bit more fun knowing what the parents are gives a hint what to look out for to.

      • #7
        Originally posted by Galina View Post
        Purple beans are known to have a slightly higher crossing tendency (including also with runner beans).
        I didn't know that and gives me a little more hope. I've just attempted a cross of Black Pod with Red Rum, two of my fave runners. I guess looking for a Black Rum or Red Pod which would look similar to Black Pod but grow and taste more like Red Rum.


        Comment


        • jayb
          jayb commented
          Editing a comment
          I've got one Black pod and 2 or 3 APStars growing, nothing to crop from APS yet to be able to compare. I think Triffid might have both of these growing.

        • Jang
          Jang commented
          Editing a comment
          Just thought it was worth mentioning that I dug up four or five roots of APS at the end of the season, pushed them into a pot each and kept them in the house over-winter. They all continued to grow slowly, got a bit of aphid in early spring but made good plants to plant out by late May.
          They seem particularly robust, but I haven’t tried the potting up with any other variety so haven’t got anything to compare with.

        • jayb
          jayb commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks, good to know they overwintered well for you. My few APS are growing in a large pot, making it easy to bring them in somewhere for the winter. Just need to remember.

      • #8
        Last year's runners were mainly from dug up roots going a second year. I just chucked them into a plastic bag with a bit of soil and very little water and knotted the handles together. Then left them in a cool and frostfree spot with just barely a cup of water every month. I posted a photo of the plastic bag in the greenhouse with the runner beans starting to grow again before being planted outside in May. Here it is. Plastic bag has been opened and stuck into a bucket. It is always worthwhile and gives an earlier crop too, but taking it to a third year has not been equally successful.



        Comment


        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          One plant has clearly not made it, all the others were ok. I could not properly separate them, so just did my best and they were fine. Your individual pots must have been more work, but easier planting out for this year than my all roots in one plastic bag.

        • jayb
          jayb commented
          Editing a comment
          They certainly look happy and lovely early flowers

        • Jang
          Jang commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks. Good to know. Perhaps not a mark of special robustness then.

          Looking forward to some experimenting this next winter.

      • #9
        Well we now have seeds from all three. The Romanian seeds are white as expected and the pods are well filled too. The purple podded ones have brown seeds which makes sense. Also 8 or so per pod. But the runnerbean type pods from the bicolour cross have surprised me. I expected black seeds. I have got beige brownish seeds. Will take a photo tomorrow when the light is better. Just one or two seeds per pod.
        Last edited by Galina; 02-10-2021, 10:28.

        Comment


        • #10
          Click image for larger version

Name:	runnercrossromanian.JPG
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          I expected differences in size and lumpy looking seeds. The colour was a surprise.

          Comment


          • triffid
            triffid commented
            Editing a comment
            Unique colouring, pretty

          • jayb
            jayb commented
            Editing a comment
            I'm sure it was, so gorgeous and different the colours are very pretty and I really love the shapes and almost lumpiness about them.
            Adore those squat types

          • Jang
            Jang commented
            Editing a comment
            How very lovely. The colouring seems very unusual - or at least I’ve not come across anything quite like them.

            It will be very interesting to see what they produce in a future growing.
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