Getting through the first summer

Cynthia Mueller
Tue, 02 Mar 2004 17:39:39 PST
Dear Joe,

The "easy" seeds I have started with, such as Hippeastrum x's, H. mandonii,
rainlilies, calla lilies, Roman hyacinths, and Cyrtanthus and Ammocharis
from the very small sprouting seeds we received thru the seed exchange, all
stayed inside their first year of life in community pots, then went outside
for summer exposure.  One colony of Cyrtanthus (very small plants) were set
out about l - l/2 inches apart in 5 inch pots, sunk into another, larger pot
to give more stable surroundings, and then were kept up in the greenhouse
(which did become very hot in the summer, but was decent in the winter)
where they had plenty of opportunities to be watered.  Another pot was
placed outside on the north side of the house but under the eaves where
there was little chance of extra water except for blowing rain.  The pots in
the greenhouse have leaves two and three times as long as those kept
outside.  Hipps stay in square plastic containers about 5 x 8" until they
are a year old.  Keeping them together any longer means their roots will be
in a permanent fused tangle.  Then they are planted outside in small knots
or clumps in the border.  Some bloomed the second spring.  Probably most all
of a large batch of about 60 will bloom this spring.  I'll send images.
Those that bloomed as two year olds had red or pink dots/ streaks and red
margins,  on pink or white backgrounds.  They all have beautiful colors, but
most won't win any beauty contests because the petals don't overlap, or
otherwise offend by being narrow.

Rainlilies take off and become mature quickly outside when also planted out
in small clumps or knots.  The fertile ones soon are blooming and throwing
off seedings right and left.

I haven't had much experience with touchy desert growers that demand
completely dry rest periods - but the things I did try did better when they
stayed in the greenhouse their first year.

The Roman hyacinths were really mixed up.  They sprouted in the spring, grew
and were planted out with leaves about two inches or more long in the fall,
then either went dormant or gave up the ghost in the winter.  No sign of
them now, at a time when the parents are blooming and setting seed, and have
completely leafed out.  Either they have become mixed up, or the armadilloes
ate them.

Cynthia W. Mueller
College Station, TX
----- Original Message -----
From: <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, February 28, 2004 9:02 AM
Subject: [pbs] Getting through the first summer

> Hi,
> I live in an area of hot and humid summers; I've lost winter-growers when
> put seedlings outside for summer.  I've also lost them if I let them go
> dormant; they just didn't have enough reserves for the first dormancy.
> Now, I keep them indoors under lights for the first summer if they are
> sorts.  I keep them on the dry side but still growing.  I think they would
> like cooler nights than I give them, but as long as they have some air
> conditioning they mostly do OK.  I keep wondering if there is a better
> Are there guidelines for how hot is too hot and how much humidity is too
> much?
> How do other folks in hot summer climates deal with this?
> Cordially,
> Joe, zone 9, Narcissus 'February Gold' is blooming in the lawn.
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