Mary Sue wrote: > If we want to change the topic to plants that produce flowers and foliage > at different times that is fine with me too. It would be a good idea to > decide soon however for the sake of the discussion. It's an interesting problem. No one has mentioned Alliums yet, but certainly these come into play when talking about bulbs that flower without leaves. On the whole, a large number of Allium species have foliage that's in decline at the same time the flowers emerge (one of the criticisms of the genus). There are those species however, where the foliage is absent or completely withered by the time the flowers arrive. One such Allium, is the Japanese A. togasii, which flowers in late summer to early autumn. URL: http://pacificbulbsociety.org/pbswiki/files/… I think of this as a plant with foliage first, then flowers... but it's sort of like determining what's first, the chicken or the egg. There are many plants that have foliage for a long season, even throughout the winter, then lose the foliage before, during, or immediately after flowering, for a short dormancy of 1-2 months, then re-emerge with winter-persistant growth. This growth pattern seems to be more of a pattern of opposites... flowers... while foliar growth is in decline or absent, an issue of active growth versus dormancy. One Allium species that has foliage and flowers quite clearly delineated, is the eastern American A. tricoccum, otherwise known as "ramps". This is a shade plant with broad lily-of-the-valley like leaves in spring. The foliage dries up, but in mid summer (July) naked flower stems reach 8-10" (20-25 cm) topped with nice white flowers. Where it grows natively, it's supposed to grow by the acre. In my dryish garden, a single bulb has grown for 16 years, always showing fresh spring flowers, but this year was the second time it ever bloomed in all those years! Here's a "ok" photo showing the July bloom head. http://pacificbulbsociety.org/pbswiki/files/… There are other alliums that produce foliage and stems in spring and into early summer... then the whole affair goes dormant... or at least gives the appearance of doing so. Specifically, Allium cupanii and A. hirtovaginatum; both Mediterranean species, come to mind. They grow in the spring, and produce sheathed buds on top of short stalks that are so thin (same thickness as the stem) that they can hardly be discerned from the stems. Sitting there now (in early August), looking like brown, dried lifeless stalks about 4-8" tall (10-20 cm), the stems are actually quite alive, and will "miraculously" emerge soon and come into late summer flowering, quite leafless and utterly interesting. While not showy, the quaint late summer or autumn blooms are dainty, surprising, and leafless. Mark McDonough Pepperell, Massachusetts, United States firstname.lastname@example.org "New England" USDA Zone 5 ============================================== >> web site under construction - http://www.plantbuzz.com/ << alliums, bulbs, penstemons, hardy hibiscus, western american alpines, iris, plants of all types!