Group Title: Press bulletin
Title: Crossing legumes
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 Material Information
Title: Crossing legumes
Series Title: Press bulletin
Physical Description: 2 leaves : ; 23 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Belling, John, b. 1866
University of Florida -- Agricultural Experiment Station
Publisher: Florida Agricultural Experiment Station
Place of Publication: Gainesville
Publication Date: 1913
Subject: Legumes -- Breeding -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Statement of Responsibility: by John Belling.
General Note: Caption title.
General Note: "January 18, 1913."
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00090326
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 83217015

Full Text




By John Belling
Many kinds of legumes, such as the varieties of kidney bean and cowpea,
have come from crosses. Until crosses have been made, we do not know
what possibilities are hidden in any plants. For four years the Experiment
Station has been crossing and selecting the most useful plants of the velvet-
bean family. Some of our results may be of use to those who are breeding
The Cross
To cross legumes we usually pull off the anthers before the flower-bud
opens, and put pollen from the other plant on the end of the style. An easy
way in the velvet-bean family is to cut off the tip of a flower which con-
tains the pollen, and to fasten it by a clip of thin wire like a cap over
the end of the style of the flower of the other plant. All except the
crossed flowers are cut away from the bunch, and all flower-bunches
which are not used for crossing are cut off the plant. The crossed
seeds resemble the ordinary seeds of the mother plant.
The First Generation
The plants which grow from the crossed seeds are usually alike. They
do not breed true; but though they are useless themselves, useful plants
can 'be raised from their seeds in the next generation.
The Second Generation
In this generation many different varieties appear. Most of them are
of no value; but a small percentage are usually better than either of the
grandparents in different ways. When the Lyon bean was crossed at the
Experiment Station with the velvet bean, the plants of the second genera-
tion differed from one another in the following characters: they had either

January 18S, 1913

purple or white flowers; smooth leaves or wrinkled leaves; very early, early,
medium, late, or very late flowers; short, long, or very long vines; short,
medium, or long bunches; white or black shoots; stinging, intermediate,
coarse downy, fine downy, coarse velvet, fine velvet, or smooth pods; pods
bursting open, or not opening; thick or thin hulls; many or few seeds in
the pods; fertile, or mostly infertile flowers; large, medium, or small seeds;
broad or narrow seeds; rounded or flattened seeds; very large, large, medium,
small, or very small crops; etc. The characters did not blend. A plant
either had a character and showed it; or had it hidden and showed it in
part of the offspring;, or did not have it. Characters which could be hidden
by the opposite character were: white flowers, short pods, one kind of
earliness, short vines, etc.
Nearly a thousand plants were grown. About two per cent. promised to
be better than their grandparents in certain ways.
The following novelties (among others) arose, and bred true: early plants,
flowering in June; plants with short vines; pods larger than those of the
Lyon; smooth black pods; seeds larger than those of the Lyon bean; deep
brown seeds; very short flower bunches.
Selecting the Constancy
The seeds from the best plants of the second generation were sown
separately. (The seeds of different plants were never mixed.) Their off-
spring showed whether these plants were constant in any particular charac-
ter. To breed plants true to purple flowers we sowed fifty seeds separately
from each of a number of purple-flowered plants Those'that produced fifty
purple-flowered offspring were true to purple flowers. The others gave about
three quarters with purple flowers, and one quarter with white flowers. All
white-flowered plants were true to white flowers. In the same way we pro-
ceeded with lateness and earliness; long and short pods; fertile and in-
fertile flowers; large and small crops; etc. The first character of each of
the above pairs had to be bred and selected, if it was wanted; but the second
character was true at once.

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