I have been known to curse our “dry heat” here in Bakersfield, not for it being dry, but for it feeling as hot as Hades sometimes! With regard to breeding for the Hulthemia blotch, our heat has been a blessing.
One of the best Hulthemias on the market is named ‘Eye’s For You’ (please click on the link to see it at it’s best). It has a gorgeous bloom, with a very large and very dark purple blotch that suggests strong fragrance – and it doesn’t disappoint! It was bred in England by Peter James. The rainier, and cooler climate in England generally does not offer as much opportunity to assess Hulthemia seedlings’ blotch heat stability. So this post is not about disparaging 'Eyes For You'. There is another advantage that rose breeders in England have over those of us in Bakersfield. It is in selecting Hulthemias with better black spot resistance.
Below are photos of Hulthemia blossoms that I shot 4 days ago. All of the plants were growing in the same general vicinity outside of the greenhouse, and the blooms were all at the same stage of opening. All but one was from my Hulthemia seedlings from 2011. The other Hulthemia was ‘Eyes For You’. Can you guess which one it is?
It is the one in the middle.