Geophytes and Lewisia

James Waddick
Mon, 26 Jan 2004 09:08:59 PST
Dear PBS;
	Been a bit distracted to reply. just some thoughts.

Geophytes are plants that grow in the earth- most herbaceous 
perennials, tree, shrubs etc. You are beating the wrong drum asking 
about the topic on this list.
	Seems we are more interested in plants that have enlarged 
storage organs and it doesn't much matter where they grow. In the 
soil (geophytes,) on rock (lithophytes), in trees (including Clivia), 
	The common condition is that they all have a storage organ 
(mostly water storage) and mostly for survival in times of stress. 
These may be modified stems (bulbs, etc.)(including rhizomes as 
modified stems), roots (potatoes etc.) and more. ome names include 
tuber, bulbs, rhizome, corm etc.

	Let's just call them 'bulbs' for convenience and not argue.

Lewisia- Another plant that has foiled me for a long time. 2 years 
ago I planted 'Little Plum' in a raised bed constructed out of 2 x 10 
lumber about 3 ft deep and containing nothing but sand from the 
Missouri River. It is in full sun. The lewisia came through two 
winters and bloomed and multiplied. The first ever to do this here.
	Last spring I planted 4 others in the same bed-all large 
flowering hybrids and they grew well all summer (worst drought here 
in years) and are now encased in 1/2 inch of ice. Except for a bit of 
leaf burn, they look great. I'll report on survival when they defrost 
and try some species this year.

	Good drainage and full sun seem a winning combination.

		Best		Jim W.
Dr. James W. Waddick
8871 NW Brostrom Rd.
Kansas City Missouri 64152-2711
Ph.    816-746-1949
E-fax  419-781-8594

Zone 5 Record low -23F
	Summer 100F +

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