You would possibly acknowledge this Satsuki from a publish earlier this 12 months. Now it’s blooming. Whereas that could be purpose sufficient to share it, one of many curiosities of Satsuki can be evident: flower coloration dominance.
Satsuki earlier than development and blooming cycle, April 2023. In the event you look intently, the flower buds that set final summer season are all over the place.
Identical azalea, two months later, June 2023. The cultivar is “Toyo”.
Check out that decrease left department. All purple flowers. There’s not one of the shade complexity of the remainder of the azalea.
Genetic mutation is displayed in flower coloration, an uncommon and enjoyable characteristic of azaleas. Understanding dominance makes it much more enjoyable.
Pink is dominant in azaleas, white is recessive. Due to the vary of values in Satsuki colours, it’s simpler to say to “darker is dominant to lighter”. Pink is recessive to carmine, a darkish purple, for example.
An article on the inheritance of azalea flower colours spells out their advanced dominance:
“Color, whether or not it’s purple, carmine purple or purple, is dominant over white. Pink is dominant solely over white. Carmine is dominant over purple. Purple is dominant over carmine. Inversely, purple is recessive to carmine, and carmine to purple. The order is, due to this fact, headed by purple adopted by carmine purple, purple and white.”¹
All this asks the query: how does this variation what we do with Satsuki bonsai?
In the event you’ve acquired a couple of azaleas you would possibly preserve eye out for dominance points. As soon as a shoot heads down the darkish path, these shoots received’t have mild flowers once more.
Previous variable-color Satsuki, unmanaged, might find yourself with all darkish flowers—purple or purple. Pruning or labeling shoots right now of 12 months, whereas the plant is flowering, might assist the retention of recessive traits.