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How we number seedlings

We are often asked how we come up with the numbers for our seedlings.  Numbering seedlings is probably different for each hybridizer.  There is no official way to number seedlings and AHS offers no guidelines. 

Here is what we do.  We start our numbering process over each year.  We only number first year bloom seedlings that we mark to keep a second year.  We start the numbering each year with the last number of the year.  For this  year that would be “1”.  We add 2 digits to the series to get up to 100 numbers.  The first number identifies the pod parent.  For example, if the first flower in the summer of 2011 has August Wedding as a pod parent, that flower will be 100-1.  The second flower we mark as a keeper that has August Wedding as a pod parent will be 100-2.  Every following flower with August Wedding as a pod parent will be 100-3, 100-4 and so on.  The pollen parent could be different in each flower and we write down both parents for each flower. 

The second pod parent would have a starting number of 101-1.  Every new pod parent will get a new number followed by a series of numbers for every pod parent. 

Typically, we will have 300 to 400 first year seedlings we mark.  Our numbering system works well with that number of seedlings.  If we go beyond 100 unique pod parents, we start with 4 digits with the first one being 1000-1. 

This system works well for us.  Every hybridizer should develop their own.  Anyone is welcome to use our system or modify what we do.