Theo Sanders, Germany

Fertility of N. x alleniae

January 9, 2010
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Categories: Cytology, Fertility, Hybridizer, Hybridizing, Science, Seeds

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In 2007, 2008 and 2009 I saw 21 clones of different N. x alleniae ( N. miniatus x N. viridiflorus ) near Conil in Southern Spain. I had my facility for testing pollen with me and found out, that 13 clones showed  some pollen fertility.This is a little sensation, because in similar cases, for example crosses of standard daffodils with species, only very few clones are pollen fertile. About one per cent of the pollen grains sprouted. In the picture you see some sprouting pollen grains of a clone I found in 2008. 
 
The seed fertility of N. x alleniae is much lower. Till now I earned 3 seeds from two different plants. Nevertheless in the far future a new species may develop in nature by self pollination. For the hybridizer the pollen fertility of N. x alleniae means that many interesting crosses with standard daffodils and other species can be made.
 
Theo

5 responses to “Fertility of N. x alleniae”

  1. Brian Duncan, Northern Ireland Brian Duncan says:

    Hello Theo,
    Very interesting and useful information. May I ask the degree odf magnification of the pictures.and how you take the pictures.  Also, at what temperature is your freezer cabinet  kept?
    Brian

  2. Theo Sanders, Germany Theo Sanders says:

    Brian and all,
     
    In November  2009 I bought a new microscope which is called Bresser Biorit and costs 130 Euro. It is suited for outdoor observations and has a little camera for transferring the pictures to the computer. The camera has no high resolution but enough for seeing the pollen grains. I print the pictures and measure the length and the width of the grain for calculating the volume. If you follow the pure theory, the pollen grain of a tetraploid species has two times the volume of the same diploid species. I hope to find an allotetraploid form of N. fernandesii near Santa Elena in March looking at the pollen. Moreover you can get  some hints for the structure of the pollen of N. x alleniae from comparing the relative magnitudes. The differences are big for the same clone.
     
    The degree of magnification for the picture of the computer may be about 300. For  the microscope I work with a magnification of 100. The pollen grains should have a length of 0,02 to 0,04 mm. I can give you no exact data, because I am interested in volume relations only.
     
    My freezer has a temperaure of minus 20 degrees C.
     
    Theo
     
     

  3. David Liedlich says:

    Hi Theo,

    I just did some on-line searching and that Bresser Biorit looks like a nice microscope.  I am not sure why, but all the sites that carry it are in Europe.  I have not found it available through a U.S. site.

    Dave Liedlich
    Connecticut

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  4. Theo Sanders, Germany Theo Sanders says:

    Dave,
     
    Perhaps you can  get the microscope from the German amazon by the USA amazon. I tried this successfully with another article  in the opposite direction.
     
    Theo
     
     

  5. Jamie Vande says:

    David,

    do a few searches for microscopes in the States, there are quite a few companies.  Although the Bresser ‘scopes are fine instruments for the hobbyist, they are made from standard parts that are used by most manufacturers.  Bresser simply does a great job of addressing their market.  Check out http://www.microscope.com for starters.  Inform yourself before buying.  There are details that may be important for you that are not dicuseed in the description.

    Jamie Vande
    Cologne

    David Liedlich schrieb:

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    Hi Theo,

    I just did some on-line searching and that Bresser Biorit looks like a nice microscope.  I am not sure why, but all the sites that carry it are in Europe.  I have not found it available through a U.S. site.

    Dave Liedlich
    Connecticut