Mexipedium breeding (hybridizing)

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May 27, 2007
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Has Mexipedium been used in any (successful) hybridizing to date. I know it was first classified as a phrag, does it have the same chromosome count as a phrag? I would think that it would have been put to work right away if someone was able to use it as a parent, could you imagine, mini besseae and caudatums...Anyone know anything?
it's kinda funny (to me) that you mention this. i was reading a page from antec yesterday about mexi's and it said that they had been used for breeding with phrags but none had yet bloomed. i don't know when the page was written, but probably several years ago.
I was wondering about this myself, the mix of a dry-liking plant w/ a wet-liking one like besseae would be interesting, and the colors and textures would be great.
Five or six years ago, Marylin LeDoux gave a talk on Phrags and and did mention that her attempts to hybridize Phrags with Mexipedium had so far ended in no viable seed. Does anyone have any more recent information?
this is the last sentence from Antec's Mexipedium Page (no date listed so it may be outdated)
"Hybrids have also been generated with Phragmipediums, however to the best of my knowledge none have yet bloomed."
one of my society member said that he used mexipedium on phrags. They did yield pods however none of the seeds germinated or they weren't viable
I also wanted to try breeding Mexipedium with Phrags. I was thinking "miniature" Phrags, and perhaps using Mexipedium as a stepping stone to create white Phrags.

I have been succesfull in actually getting seedpods and even germinating the seedlings in the lab! I was able to cross Mexipedium to Phrag. besseae, Phrag. longifolium, and Phrag. fischeri. Unfortunately I think we are dealing with a too far out cross. The seedlings grew for about a year in the lab, although I have to say they did not grow well, they seemed to keep proliferating, without making individual seedlings. After about a year they would crash and die on me.

I do know that earlier we had crossed Phrag. wallisii (warscewiczianum) to Mexipedium, and that actually made it out of the lab, but it was a weak grower, and never made it to blooming size. I think it too perished.

I have also tried crossing Mexipedium to Cypripediums and Paph's, but those never created viable seedlings. This probably tells you that Mexipedium is more closely related to Phragmipediums, but to me the fact that you get no blooming size hybrids between Phragmipedium and Mexipedium, and also because the flowers and the growth habit is so different warrants it to be a separate genus.

I heard from Bob Wellenstein a few years ago that he had tried crossing Mex. with Cyp acaule.....he had hopes, but wasn't optimistic. Not having heard anything further, I'm assuming the cross didn't take.....Take care, Eric
Hey Rob...would crossing two 4n varieties make it easier for the plants to grow? Then it would have the full genetic compliment from both parents.
Ohio-guy, You are probably right, that if you crossed a 4N Mexipedium to a 4N Phragmipedium, you probably would get more viable plants. Unfortunately I don't think there are any 4N Mexipediums out there that I know of. If I ever do get a 4N Mexipedium, I definitely will try crossing it with a 4N Phrag.

Here's what Marilyn had to say:

I tried the hybridizing some years back but eventually gave up. The lab I use did get a few phrag-mexi crosses to germinate (the paph-mexi crosses never did) but when I would get the few seedlings back they would always die once removed from flask. I gave up due to excessive lab costs with nothing to show for it.


Sounds like the same issues that OL had. I'd be really curious to see Bob Wellenstein weigh in here...

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