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Just though you may be interested

Posted by splinter1804 (My Page) on
Sat, May 30, 09 at 18:23

Hi everyone,
Some time ago I posted (as a response to another thread) a few pic's of some Neo. seedlings I grew, some of which showed some variegation.

I though some of the GW'ers may be interested in how these seedlings came about, and please feel free to comment as I value your input greatly.

A few years ago I purchased a plant of Neo. Painted Lady at a local sale of bromeliads which been sent down to our area from Northern NSW (I think from the town of Ballina).

It was an adult sized plant and flowered soon after I got it. It then put up two pups, one was green and the other showed some 'wishy washy' variegation. I gave what I suspected was a normal Painted Lady pup to a friend and kept the one with the variegation for myself. My inexperienced friend subsequently planted his pup in the garden (too deeply)and it died.

Unfortunately due to my inexperience, I lost the original Painted Lady plant due to water drips from CCA treated timber and was just left with the pup with the anaemic variegation.

Eventually this plant did get some colour and was worth keeping for its history alone, if nothing else. Eventually it flowered and although I never pollinated any flowers, almost every one formed a seed capsule.

At this stage I was just beginning to get interested in trying to grow Neo's from seed so I tried quite a few different methods of growing this seed as an experiment.

The germination rate was amazing and I soon had seedlings growing every where. As they grew I fertilized them to hurry them up a bit and it wasn't until the Nitrogen in the fertilizer was depleted that I noticed one of the seedlings was showing some variegation. This of course made me quite excited as I had actually grown a variegated plant from seed, WOW!

During the next few months a few extra plants showed variegations also and they were subsequently potted on and given special treatment while the others were just more or less left to their own devices.

Variegated seedlings from P.L. (sport) parent

Neo. seedlings from Painted Lady [Sport]

Neo. Seedlings from Painted Lady [Sport]

Neo. Seedlings from Painted Lady [Sport]

At this stage the non-variegated plants are just starting to now show a bit of colour but are probably a year from maturity so I don't know what they will look like.

Also some of the variegated plants (above) have now grown some more and are starting to show some colour also (I'll take a pic and post it when the rain stops)

The mother of these seedlings has since thrown three pups like the one below and all are the same as her with the "wishy washy" variegations, and not a sign anywhere of a Painted Lady.

Neo Painted Lady [sport] from above

Neo Painted Lady [Sport] from side

It looks like I've lost my Painted Lady but got second prize in place of her, what do you reckon?

All the best, Nev.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Just though you may be interested

Hi Guys

Looks like you now have your Neo. Splinter, (this is where you can select one out & call it Splinters Best clone).

Very nice looking variegate.


RE: Just though you may be interested

Hi Nev, should be really interesting to see those seedlings grow through! Cheers, Paul

RE: Just though you may be interested

That's a very interesting story, Nev. Every little bit of information like that helps add to our understanding.

Now, I have a couple of questions for you: can you define what you mean by "wishy-washy variegation"? When you first said that, my mental image was not at all what I'm seeing in the last 2 pics above. On the contrary, one look at that plant and I can see why you got variegated seedlings from it. It's got "the right stuff". ;-)

Second question: are you certain about the identity of the plant you bought? As you say, this one shows no signs of Painted Lady's markings. Did the original one look like PL? I'm wondering if you could have gotten something like a carolinae x Painted Lady (novar) instead, in which case the variegated pup and the resulting seedlings would be much less surprising. Knowing the correct heritage of a hybrid really does make a difference in predicting the outcome!

RE: Just though you may be interested

Hi everyone,
A couple of answers for Lisa:

The word 'Wishy Wasy' probably wasn't the best description I could have used, but in the plant's early stages the variegation wasn't as clearly defined as it later became as the plant matured, it certainly didn't "stand out" the same as some of my other variegated plants do.

As for the Painted Lady parent being correctly named, well after reading the info. in my other post (Confused), who knows? All I can say is the name on the label was Painted Lady.

When I compared it with other pictures in books and on the FCBS Photo Index, it was most similar to the pic's by Michael Andreas, but then again all pictures vary a lot so who knows?

There are two more experienced growers than I who had it in their collections at that time and they confirmed it was Painted Lady which made me tend to agree the name was correct.

Adding to this the possibility of two or more seedlings being almost identical and called the same name, (which was mentioned in my other post [confused]), has now planted a seed of doubt in my mind as to its true identity, so I guess I'll never know for certain, but then again are we ever certain? Sorry I can't be more specific Lisa, but that's as I see it.

As I said previously, I planted several batches of seed; and below is a pick of a few variegated seedlings from the second batch. (I think I may have already shown these on a previous post). As I look through the other batches I am still finding the ocasional variegated seedling, so I may get a good one yet.

PL Seedlings

I'll keep you all informed of any developments, plus I'll get some more pic's now the rain has stopped.

All the best, Nev.

RE: Just though you may be interested

Thanks, Nev. I didn't mean to put you on the spot, it's just that I am currently trying to piece together a working theory on exactly how all of this works, so the little details can mean a lot.

RE: Just though you may be interested

Hi Lisa,
No problems, I hope I can add something of value to your theory.

I'm still very green at all of this, but most of what I've learned is from this forum and consequently I'm happy to share anything that may be of help to anyone.

All the best, Nev.

RE: Just though you may be interested


Thanks for sharing, I think you are on a winner there - your plant looks similar to the one that Dennis has successfully used.


Here is a link that might be useful: How to make variegated hybrid

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