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By Jedikinigit
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Joined:  Sun Dec 03, 2023 5:35 pm
#447430
Hey everybody, new to this game, but I'm interested in trying my hand at some plant matchmaking. Would people recommend doing x self pollination for my first year, or mixing things up, or just allowing open pollination? I've got at least 8 different Sarrs that are about to bloom. I do have the little mesh bags to cover them. Thanks.
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By ChefDean
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#447432
OP is easiest, just let Mother Nature sing her sweet song. Then it's a mystery as to what the seeds will produce.
Next, x self. Easy because you have everything in one spot. However, you need to pollinate it daily for a few days as I've read that the stigma are only receptive for a day or two.
Crossing gives you the potential to try to get some known characteristics from each parent, but they need to be blooming together or you need to save pollen.
X self tends to produce fewer, smaller, and weaker seeds. OP or deliberate crossing tends to produce more robust seeds, and more of them.
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By Panman
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#447435
Sarracenia Northwest has a good video on how to pollinate pitcher plants here https://youtu.be/ug3_JJlJmI0?feature=shared

My experience with allowing nature to takes its course has been less than optimal. I don't know what it is, but I don't get enough bees or other insects to pollinate the plants for me. For that reason I run around with a water color paint brush scooping up pollen and delivering it to different plants. If I'm lazy I label them as OP. If I am industrious, I put an organza bag over the flower before it opens and label it after I pollinate it. I do recommend do ing the same flower a few days in a row to be sure. One important fact that many first timers don't think about is that you need to let the flowers ripen. You may pollinate them in April, but they may not be ready to harvest until October. Wait until the seed pod has turned brown before harvesting it.
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By Jedikinigit
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#447454
Thank you. Great video! I'll try a combination of things, maybe try for a x self on one or two and let the rest OP. I like exciting, unexpected outcomes.
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By Panman
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#447455
If you are going to self or cross, you will need flower organza bags to cover the flower before it opens and after you pollinate it.
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By Jedikinigit
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#447460
Thank you. I bought some and am ready to go once these flowers finally open. How long does it take for them to be ready to pollinate once they open? Days, weeks?
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By NightRaider
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#447461
The viability of leaving sarrs to pollinate naturally been debated on here before and seems to be a mixed bag, so I'll add that I have the same experience as Panman even though I live practically a stone's throw away from Chef who I seem to recall doesn't have that problem. Year 1 I didn't do any manual pollination and had zero flowers produce any seed, so year 2 I (poorly) hand pollinated and had at least an 80% hit rate on the flowers I bagged even with being lazy and only pollinating them once.
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By Panman
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#447468
Jedikinigit wrote: Tue Feb 27, 2024 3:43 am How long does it take for them to be ready to pollinate once they open? Days, weeks?
It is a matter of days for the flower to be ready to pollinate. My practice is once it drops pollen to begin the pollination process for the next 3 or 4 days.

If I remember correctly, the Sarracenia Northwest video recommends removing the petals to make pollinating easier. I do not do this and I don't have any problems getting the pollen where it needs to go.
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By andynorth
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#447475
Interesting topic. I am hoping to manually pollinate myself but will try for OP with most. We have lots of bees from spring through fall so hopefully they will pollinate them. There are a few that I do not want to OP and I have a question. About how long does it take from when a flower starts to open for it to be opened all the way in order to get the pollen?
@Panman, do you have other flowers in your garden? I do not have a bunch but I have some that attract the bees. While admiring the 2 plants I had last year I had to chase bees away several times. There were no flowers but the bees still seemed to be attracted to my Sarrs. Hopefully the same will happen this year when I have them all out near the garden. Although I do not live right next to farmland, it is not too far away and bees are plentiful.
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By Panman
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#447486
andynorth wrote:About how long does it take from when a flower starts to open for it to be opened all the way in order to get the pollen?
If I am remembering correctly, it is just a few days until it starts to produce pollen. It is easy enough to tell, because it will be collected on the underside of the flower.
andynorth wrote:Panman, do you have other flowers in your garden?
I have a vegetable garden, but nothing that would really encourage pollinators and that may be my problem. When I had them in the Squirrel Defense 5000, I found that most bees couldn't figure out how to get through the chicken wire. Wasps didn't seem to have a problem.
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By andynorth
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#447502
Plant marigolds in some pots. Lots of them. Bees love them. They are what I used back in the day when I had a veggie garden. Mother in law told me they were a must as they attract many bees. Also anything made to attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
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By andynorth
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#447561
Panman wrote: Tue Feb 27, 2024 1:12 pm
Jedikinigit wrote: Tue Feb 27, 2024 3:43 am How long does it take for them to be ready to pollinate once they open? Days, weeks?
It is a matter of days for the flower to be ready to pollinate. My practice is once it drops pollen to begin the pollination process for the next 3 or 4 days.

If I remember correctly, the Sarracenia Northwest video recommends removing the petals to make pollinating easier. I do not do this and I don't have any problems getting the pollen where it needs to go.
So am I to assume that if the petals are dried and about to fall off then it is too late? I was waiting for the middle to open which, after watching videos is not the case. There appears to be pollen in the bottom but is not really sticking to my brush. I fear I waited too long but if that is the case, this first one was my test subject that was in my grow tent. The rest are still dormant, just waiting on the last freeze up here. One of those "Now I know" moments I suppose.
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By NightRaider
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#447567
Qtips also work in my experience. Pollen sticks to them much better than brushes in my experience, and even though I wasn't sure I was actually getting enough pollen to rub off it didn't seem to be an issue based on my success rate. It's less tried and true than using a brush though.
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By steve booth
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Joined:  Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:15 am
#447577
Don't worry about attracting bees, they will come, and if they don't although they are considered primary pollinators, there are plenty of other pollinators that will be on hand to help, flies, beetles, moths etc.
Cheers
Steve
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