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Subject:  Genetics wrking grp big and orange crossing rec's

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Date Posted

Joze (Joe Ailts)

Deer Park, WI

On behalf of the genetics working group (GWG), thank you to all the growers who have expressed interest in the project. The SCGA has sold out of the orange genetic seed collections, demonstrating the degree of interest in orange.

As a sidenote, please recognize that any revenue generated for the sale of big and orange seed collections will be used for genetic research projects on the horizon. The SCGA will only retain postal fees for processing the orders. Neither the SCGA nor working group aims to profit from these sales, rather to generate some funds for research.

As stated, our goal is to provide guidance for the creation of the world's biggest, orangest, most eye-appealing line of giants possible.

Further, there is an emphasis on the "sunburst" pattern of color, where shiny, deep orange is interspersed with orange-yellow bursts of color. Follow the link below for a picture of the 2152 Gantner that displays this "sunburst" pattern beautifully.


As such, we know the 1501 VDW seed can produce offspring with every characteristic we seek to achieve in this project. For those who want to contribute to our project, the GWG encourages planting this seed.

Because the 1501 VDW is not 100% consistent in its offspring color/pattern, we recommend selfing the fruit or pollinating with one of the seeds from the color group demonstrating the sunburst pattern.

3/24/2019 11:48:33 AM

Joze (Joe Ailts)

Deer Park, WI

Regarding the 2152 Gantner, we recognize this seed has generated significant popularity. Its pollinator, the 1418 Leher, had a cream-orange color: http://tools.pumpkinfanatic.com/fruitImages.php?PN=1418%20Lehrer%202017

Because the pollinator did not display the deep orange, sunburst character, it is quite likely that a good portion of 2152 offspring will not display deep orange sunburst character. For those planning to grow with the hopes that the 2152 can become a meaningful player in the true orange genetic pool, we strongly recommend self crossing or pollinating with a true sunburst character male.

Regarding the three big and orange seeds (1157, 1576, 1211), we recommend self pollinating and/or crossing within this combination to further solidify sunburst character. The goal here is preservation of color while trying to maximize size, providing improved genetic pool for the next generation of size and color in 2020. And as mentioned above, utilize the big and orange seeds as pollinators for seeds like the 1501 VDW, 1317 Clementz, 1734 Clementz, and others of significant size that also displayed sunburst character.

The GWG looks forward to your input and the patch outcomes of this season's orange efforts. Good luck to all!

3/24/2019 11:55:41 AM

Orange U. Glad


From a scientific point of view, are there any studies that show the impact on genetics from the pollinator? I have heard some say look for color and shape. Others say that the pollinator has zero impact on the first generation.

You seem to be the guy that would know what scientific studies suggest. Thank you in advance for your reply and I hope to have a couple of the seeds you mentioned in the garden this year.

3/25/2019 10:03:40 AM


Plymouth, MN

It may be helpful to put together a document with multiple representative images of each orange color type. Are 2307 Wallace DMG and 2416.5 Haist both examples of less-intensely orange starburst? Is 1567 Gantner 2018 more orange starburst?

3/25/2019 10:58:09 AM



Joe, I couldn't agree more with your second post. However I see any big and orange as a good starting point to cross your 1211 into. It may take a few years and it is still a crap shoot.

3/25/2019 11:14:24 AM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

I think if the 2152 produces orange and is crossed with a pumpkin that has the desired traits it may be a good cross. Lets face it Genetics are a crap shoot. My 673 Engel was a 1200 Engel( 1912 Carter x 1143 Engel) x 1374 Engel. Out of the dozen planted last year not one was beautiful like I like. It lost its luster, but kept its weight to chart desired characteristics. Still Orange but not shiny, with calai starburst that I desire.

3/25/2019 12:48:17 PM

Joze (Joe Ailts)

Deer Park, WI

It is well accepted and understood that a pollinator has influence on all traits associated with the first generation. Anyone who says otherwise lacks a fundamental grasp of genetics.

This is not to be confused with the impact of the pollinator on the developing fruit. Aside from providing the other 50% of the genetic material necessary for seed production, there's no information that suggests the pollinator impacts a developing ovule (pumpkin).

3/25/2019 3:28:17 PM

Joze (Joe Ailts)

Deer Park, WI

cjb- great suggestion. I'm submitting an entry to my diary that documents a couple examples

3/25/2019 3:43:45 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

Great topic Joe, Your 1211.5 was a beautiful example of the starburst. I am stlll seeking the solid orange perfect pumpkin. I will watch to see how you proceed. 2019 is not a grow season for me. 2020, I might have to start the solid genetic group. My 1211 was a disappointment for me...you beat my by .5 pounds and had a prettier pumpkin. I know my 1109 has Haan potential. What do you think orange growers...can solid keep up with starburst?

3/25/2019 6:58:14 PM


Gays Mills, Wisconsin

don't forget amelio's demonstration of pollinator affects on squash :)

3/25/2019 6:59:53 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

grrrr....John..don't look at my bp entries from 2012/2013. Lets leave the past behind. We are talking about future with thought. I am still touchy about some things. Mr Barlow...what do you think is the Champion HD winner thru the years...my favorite from beginning was the 1610 Lieber...I don't know if it won the HD. It was solid orange. I am a solid orange lover....i know that there are the calais/starburst lovers.

3/25/2019 7:16:48 PM

Reed's Birds and Bees

Savage, MN

The 916 Cleaview and its mother both had beautiful starburst pattern. From 2016.

3/25/2019 7:45:39 PM


Princeville, IL

Lots of pictures of pumpkins with Calai mottling in my 2017 diary

3/25/2019 9:55:10 PM

Orangeneck (Team HAMMER)

Eastern Pennsylvania

Where is this sunburst stuff coming from all the sudden? I assume you mean what they call Calai spots. I’ve been trying to breed them out, not the other way around. I don’t care for them at all. Just my opinion.

3/25/2019 10:39:41 PM


Syracuse, NY

Not that I intend to always follow right after your comments, Orangeneck, lol, it's just always THAT time of the morning when I'm on here, and you've always just posted before me---
to all, SUNBURST is a pattern whereby the color fades from or progresses toward a darker orange color, as in the case of the 575 Wolf (the best and only example i could find @ this moment):


this fruit seems to exhibit also the 'Calai dots' that I've seen them called on here, no problem; if there's any way to commemorate Fred Calai, I'm all for it, whereby I'd like to call them SunSpots myself, but they are usually a LIGHTER orange and sunspots are black on the surface of the sun---if anyone has a fruit that HAS SunSpots?
I'd love a few of the seeds that grew it!
Otherwise, although I DID want to 'establish my opinion' about the terminology for Calai dots and Sunburst, i happened again upon this mind-changing phrase:
"with Calai starburst that I desire."

so, I'd say:

(Calai dots, Calai spots, Calai mottling, Calai starburst)

Sunburst - is just that, and,

Solid Orange - is just that,

and each would be a good term for each their own purpose. eg

3/26/2019 3:43:46 AM

Joze (Joe Ailts)

Deer Park, WI

I'll claim responsibility for the confusion in color pattern nomenclature. As a relative newbie to the orange club, I wasnt aware that "Calai spots/mottling" was the common vernacular. I'll strike sunburst from the record and replace with the accepted convention.

As for why the pumpkin community is abuzz about it...the genetics working group and a few others who appreciate orange were discussing color patterning in Green Bay at the Big Show. Calai mottling, combined with deep orange color, was identified as a highly desirable characteristic.

This is not to dismiss those like bnot and Orangeneck who are striving for a more pure/solid color scheme. There are plenty of patches out there that can contribute to the goal.

3/26/2019 7:21:25 AM

Jay Yohe

Pittsburgh, PA

Personally I like the terms Sunburst or Starburst but that's just me. I'm not sure how to even pronounce "Calai".

3/26/2019 10:09:17 AM

Orange U. Glad


I am a big fan of LaRiviere 1576 field pumpkin orange color. I want a large pumpkin that looks live a carving pumpkin or better yet like a pumpkin in "It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown." To each his own there is no wrong "orange" as long as it is orange. I find it amusing on Pumpkin Fanatics how heavy hitters always list there pumpkins as orange and then you look at the pic and are like really?

3/26/2019 10:32:28 AM


Plymouth, MN

Picture quality and lighting can make it a real challenge to judge orange. Just look at the two 2416.5 pictures that are on pumpkin fanatics as an example.

3/26/2019 2:20:17 PM

big moon

Bethlehem CT

Another thing to note, is that a pumpkin that is "polished" (rubbed with a towel) will appear darken up and the colors will come out and be enhanced.

3/27/2019 7:19:31 AM


Oak Grove, Mn

is there a good calais example that has been selfed for multiple generations? I have been trying thru the years to lock up solid color by selfing. In two years, I might put one of my 710 seeds into a neglected area of my yard. It is a few generations selfed. 1161-1610-710. It had mottling so I never grew the next generation. It seems to me that with more garden area, i can grow more plants, give them limited care and observe the colors. My 1211 came from such a plant. 1161-1610-184-356-1109-1211. To find the pretties pumpkin...obviously previous generation weights are not critical.

3/27/2019 10:14:48 AM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

I love a good discussion on orange :)

3/27/2019 1:25:10 PM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

Dark Orange, Weigh to the chart, Smooth skin, Natural Luster that can be brought out with a soft cloth polish, and Symmetry are my desired traits.

3/27/2019 1:32:38 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

shannon...I don't know yet...maybe my ideal will be allis chalmers orange, light to chart (a big ballon has the same visual impact but is easier to manuever), i will agree with the smooth skin and symmetry...I am still favoring the solid orange, but i think my opinion could be swayed not by a polka dot, but something that appears like little stars all over the pumpkin. I have seen potential for that from some of the dark veining I have seen on fruit.

I have to make my standards so difficult...they probably wont be achieved in my life, I have a reason to keep growing every year.

3/27/2019 2:51:43 PM


I. Falls, Minn

I like both. I think I'll grow one of Bob's and one of Bill's. Any orange is good for me.

3/27/2019 4:06:35 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

cross them larry...you can have bill'bob

3/27/2019 9:43:54 PM


Buffalo, MN (Billsbigpumpkins@hotmail.com)

I'm with bnot on the AC orange but the mottling (I like starburst) also looks fantastic in the patch. I would be happy with either. Frostbite are you crossing or selfing

3/27/2019 9:53:34 PM


I. Falls, Minn

Haven't got them to germinate yet. It's your 359, you can decide.

3/27/2019 10:35:18 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

larry, what bob seeds do you still have...i have a bag of 184's, a bag of 356's, only 5 1109's and a big bag of 1211's. I also have a bag of 710's.I had a handful of non-floaters of the 1211, but somehow I lost that bag. In the past few days..i am thinking about starting some seeds in mid-may...they will be potential 200 pounders with the time i have available this year. Any seed you want i will send to you.

3/27/2019 10:53:19 PM


I. Falls, Minn

1109 I think.

3/28/2019 12:33:11 AM



Just my personal preference, but I prefer the solid orange as well. Here's a thought I've had. Maybe self the 1734 Clementz for a few generations, then cross it with the 1109 Borgers.

3/28/2019 1:45:38 AM


Oak Grove, Mn

same thing goes for Larry goes for you Doug any of my seeds are yours if you want it, I have the seeds from your HD winner sitting in a plastic bag on my desk. I could send them to you if you want or I can give you them next time we see each other.

Sorry Joe, If it looks like your thread was hijacked. Looks like the area growers could get into the Orange.

3/28/2019 9:33:36 AM



I'll take some 1211s bob

3/28/2019 10:28:51 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

Tony...when do you need them by?

3/28/2019 10:45:48 PM


Oak Grove, Mn

Nevermind..we can work out the details in email

3/28/2019 10:58:53 PM



Bob, thanks for the seed offer, but I think I'll be taking this year off from growing giant pumpkins. Regarding seeds from my HD winner, you can do what you want with them. No need to give any back to me, thanks anyway.

4/6/2019 2:00:19 AM

The Pumpkinguru

Cornelius, Oregon

Shoot, late to the party on this. I am with Shannon, love some good orange discussion. As for the naming of the light orange splotches on a darker orange base, they were called Starbursts even before there was an 846 Calai. You can get White on Green, and these light orange on dark orange both from the 900.8 Lyons 94, so they probably go back even further than that. Now if you want to attach Fred's name to them in his honor, that's cool, he was a stand up guy and worthy of it. But run with the Calai Starburst Pattern, not 'mottling'
As far as which is better, the Starburst or the solid color, I would say there is enough growers interested in this that you, we, whatever, start breeding to isolate both. Especially now that the nice Orange ones are competing for overall heaviest in addition to being nice colored, I know for me, would have no problem planting some of these in my competition sites. Just some ramblings from an has been...

4/9/2019 3:42:57 PM


Kakabeka Falls,On. Canada.

Would the 1501 X 1939 Hunt/Lyons be a good cross?

3/12/2021 8:56:06 AM

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