John Fisher studied plant breeding at Sydney University and went on to manage extensive wheat breeding programs in New South Wales for over 20 years.
John and his wife Jill have always been keen gardeners. Following retirement, John was keen to devote time to alternative plant breeding projects and identified the potential in the genus Salvia.
There are over 900 Salvia species worldwide. They are found in all the major ecosystems and cover the full range of colours. John’s aim is to produce novel hybrids that provide the best combination of plant form and flower colour. Salvia Love and Wishes is the first variety from John’s breeding programme.
A plant breeder always dreams of having their varieties grown widely. But John’s passion goes beyond that.
“I am passionate about the science of plant breeding but not in an ivory tower way. Unlike many horticultural species, there is a substantial scientific literature on Salvias because of their unique floral morphology and complex chemistry. This provides the basis for the development of a well structured breeding program. Salvias, in addition to their horticultural potential, pose intriguing academic questions about taxonomy, evolutionary relationships and ecological adaptations.”
Love and Wishes, bred by John Fisher of New South Wales, Australia, is the third colour in the Wish Collection of Salvia varieties. It has a deep purple flower, dark green foliage and dark stems – making it a perfect compliment to the existing Wish varieties, Wendy’s Wish and Ember’s Wish.
The Wish Collection of Salvia is managed in Europe by Graham Spencer of Plants For Europe Limited, an independent plant breeders’ agent based in East Sussex. As soon as he saw the new variety, Graham immediately approached William Dyson of Dyson’s Nurseries – the perfect partner for the UK launch at Chelsea.
William says “Love and Wishes has a lot going for it: a long flowering period, sumptuous reddish purple flowers with burgundy stems and calyces and attractive foliage. I rate the Wish series very highly and Love And Wishes makes a fantastic specimen for a container”.
Look out for Love and Wishes at Chelsea on William’s display – stand number GPF8.
You can find Salvia Love and Wishes on Facebook at www.facebook.com/salvialoveandwishes and on Twitter with the hashtag #loveandwishes – check these two social media streams for all the latest news and photos during the Chelsea launch!
Images of Salvia Love and Wishes. Click to open a full-size image. These images are made available for re-use by journalists, publications and blogs without charge subject to the condition that they are credited to Plants For Europe Limited and carry a link to www.loveandwishes.info
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This is the website for Salvia Love and Wishes – the third colour in the exciting Wish Collection of Salvia – being launched in the UK in 2015! Check this site for information about how Love and Wishes will grow in your garden, how to get the best from it, supplier information, launch news and much more!