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Pollinating Cirsium

Here’s what needs to be done tomorrow, around 10am, for pollinating Cirsium altissimum at Hegg Lake.

I will provide a clipboard with a data sheet, map, and pollinating tools. Plant numbers are on flags to the south of the plants. Plant 9-7 has a yellow twist-tied head that is flowering right now. It will need to be selfed. Yellow tt heads on plants 9-16,-6, and -8 may be flowering tomorrow. If so, they also need to be selfed. Plant 9-19 had two bagged yellow heads. One is done flowering, the other may be flowering tomorrow. If the second one is flowering, it should be selfed. 9-26 with a red tt may be flowering. If so, it needs to be crossed. Cross pollen can be obtained from 9-14, which has a white tt and is blooming now, or 9-21, which may be flowering tomorrow.

To pollinate the heads, use a q-tip provided. For selfing, just rub the q-tip over the anthers to collect the pollen, then brush the q-tip on the stigmas. The pollen is very sticky and will easily stick to the q-tip. For crossing, rub a q-tip on the anthers of a pollen donor (white tt). Place in a labeled glass vial, transport to the head to be crossed, and rub the stigmas with the q-tip. Be sure to write down which plant was used as a pollen donor.

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