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Hybridyzing Created High Expectations

Hybridizing became popular in the nineteenth century, especially when growers sought new plants for the garden.

There was a side effect however.

Horticulturist Lawrence Griffith in his book Flowers and Herbs of Early America makes the point that because of the power of hybridizing, growers were asked to create the ‘perfect’ flower, ideal in color and size.

Griffith says that the idea of regarding plants as strictly ornamental objects was just beginning to dawn towards the end of the sixteenth century.

We know also that gardening became a hobby during the 1600s, beginning with France and England.

Gardeners wanted newer and more exotic plants.

Griffith writes, “Intensive hybridization over the past two and a half centuries has accustomed modern eyes to expectations of floral grandeur and extravagant duration of bloom.”

Today growers like Proven Winners are in constant search for the newest ‘Supertunia’ to offer the garden center or nursery

Gardeners want new plants, but they also want old familiar varieties that they have grown for years.

English horticulturist Noel Kingsbury wrote in his book Hybrid ”New versions of familiar plants sell well.”

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