Developing Seed Pods
As someone who is new to hybridizing one of the most frequent questions asked is "how do I know if my cross was successful". It is difficult to try to explain what to look for without having some sort of visual aid for assistance. Thanks to Mr. Barry Schleuter of Houston, TX. for taking the time and effort to post these pics recently on THML (The Hibiscus Mailing List), as an educational tool for everyone.
|This may be a successful cross, but the irregular development around the base of the pod is not a good omen...||The brownish pod in netting may be a successful cross; the one below it may be also, but again, the base is not smooth.|
|This is early after the cross, looking like a failure so far.||This pod is ripening, turning brown as it matures.|
|The pod on top is fat and smooth, developing nicely. The lower pod, pollinated the same day, is clearly a failure and will fall.||Any ovary this yellow and still small is a failed cross.|
|This young ovary is developing nicely, a successful cross.||The upper ovary is developing nicely, successful; the yellow one is a failed cross.|
|The pod on the left is probably a success; the yellow one will fall off.||This kind is maddening. IT is developing rapidly and one can imagine it being full of seeds, but it is likely a false pregnancy, an empty ovary, as predicted by its convoluted shape.|
|Two ovaries developing nicely, with ample seeds inside.||The ovary in my hand is developing as it should, with seeds inside.|
|The ovary nearest the camera is certainly a successful cross, and the other probably is too, but is rather slender and if it contains seeds, it will not be many.||Note the shape of the pod; it may contain a seed or two or three, or none at all.|
|This is likely a pod containing some seeds, but not so many as I'd wish.||A variety of pods developing on "Earth and Fire", a good sign that a new seedling wants to be a mother. But I see no fat, smooth pods predicting lots of seeds per pod.|
This fat but gnarly pod is already chlorotic, and will abort, a false pregnancy.