What Is a Hybrid Garden Plant?

Cross-Bred for Better Quality.

Commercial hybridizing is a process by which new, marketable plants are developed with particularly desirable qualities. Hybrids are developed for disease resistance, size of plant, flower, or fruit, increased flowering, color, taste, or any reason a plant might be considered special. Most modern plants currently available to home gardeners are hybrids.

What Is a Hybrid Plant?

A hybrid plant is the result of cross-pollinating two different plant varieties and then growing the seeds that the cross produces. The plant that grows from that seed is considered a hybrid. Hybrids are actually quite popular. For instance, Meyer lemons are hybrids: They're a cross between a lemon tree and Mandarin orange tree.

Are Hybrid Plants Unnatural?

Most hybrid plants are intentional crosses, but hybridization can occur in nature. In fact, it happens quite often. Two nearby plants of different species can be cross-pollinated by insects or the wind and the resulting seed simply falls on the soil and grows into a hybrid. Few of the flowers and vegetables we grow today are in their original wild form. In nature, hybrids are hit or miss. Commercial hybrids come about after a great deal of work and many attempts are discarded if they do not produce the desired results. Whether the cross occurs naturally or intentionally, do not confuse hybrids with genetically modified plants (GMO), which are created using techniques such as gene cloning. Hybrids are simply two plants that cross-pollinated.

Source: https://www.thespruce.com/