Sunday, December 27, 2009

From Darkness Comes Light (Huben 10)

34 E 3.5, Cream Self, Dor Dip Noc
(Aerial * Boston Symphony) * A Small Multitude
Seedling number: MH0231D

A breakthrough! I've long admired the dark scapes on Corky and Golden Chimes, but I wanted to get away from the yellow to cleaner, brighter colors. Here's a distinctive light cream self with wide petals, ruffles, and plenty of green in the throat on inky purple scapes!  The buds add to the beauty with their intriguing dark shading at base and tip.  This one should win an award.

From Darkness Comes Light is incredibly floriferous because it has high scape density.  It rapidly increases to a beautiful, fountain-shaped clump where each of the slender fans has a splendidly branched scape with up to 25 buds and 4 branches (in my poor garden.)  The graceful dark scapes come from Corky ancestry on both sides; neither parent has more than a touch of darkness on the scapes.

Dark scapes seem elusive: from some angles they appear black, while from others they appear green.  Heat, moisture, and light seem to affect how dark the scape is in my garden: I expect that the scapes will be much darker in most other gardens than in mine.  This picture exaggerates the contrast a little, and only the last 8 inches of scape are colored for me, but the scapes are beautifully purple.  Not as deeply purple as Sir Blackstem, but far more graceful and beautiful.  These scapes stay erect unless they are heavily podded.

Another distinctive feature of From Darkness Comes Light is the extraordinary quality of the foliage.  This year I noticed that it showed no signs of senescence or disease at Harmon Hill Farm at the end of August.  Unlike the gnarled, stubby foliage of Sir Blackstem, this foliage is graceful and slender.  The photo above was taken August 31st.

From Darkness Comes Light is terrifically fertile, setting pods either way with ease.  First results have shown some seedlings with excellent branching, much darker scapes and exciting bud colors.  A few have left the yellow behind, and are melons or clear, pale reds.  I've made a LOT of seed from this one!


David Kirchhoff said...

Huben continues in his quest for performance beyond the ordinary in his daylilies. The promise of H. 'From Darkness Comes Light' is great. Its potential could well be immeasurable as a breakthrough plant for hybridizing daylilies of the future.

Chris Darrow said...

Hey Mike.
Love "From Darkness Comes Light"! Did you ever make use of that dark scaped daylily I gave you about 7-8 years ago. Its just labelled 4-9-01. Here are some of my other dark scaped cultivars

Mike Huben said...

Hi, Chris!

Good to hear from you again. FDCL is really nice: I should bring you a piece next time I visit.

I haven't used 4-9-01, but Bob Sobek has extensively. My dark scape lines derive mostly from Corky and Golden Chimes.

I love the look of your 17-08: if I were you I'd cross it with Linda Michaels' 'Stars My Destination' to combine dark scapes with more branching with your extra dark scapes.

Have you noticed any particular genetics of dark scapes? It looks like a simple recessive to me, but the extra dark scapes might have some other genes involved.

I've made a big list of dark scaped varieties and seedlings if you're interested.

But my big objective is to get away from the yellow to produce dark scapes with melon or white flowers. I've got some melon ones now, but I don't think I want to introduce them yet. They are not nearly as nice looking as FDCL.

blueeyes said...

Bonus here! Mid-November here in Indianapolis and just noticed a scape pop up! And the only scape to find in my whole yard! We had had some heavy frosts a couple of weeks ago and stopped all blooming on those in bud. 'Sunshine On Clouds' is planted right next to it and was blooming until that point. Obviously this scape won't bloom unless I dig it up bring inside. It's supposed to hard freeze tonight.