Grass Aloes are good geophytes
Mon, 29 Nov 2004 22:37:17 PST
Just to throw my spanner in the works, in my opinion grass aloes are at
least as 'bulbous' as may of the plants discussed on this list. They have a
swollen, tuberous root, become dormant and lose their leaves as summer
drought sets in and reappear when it rains. An excellent example of a
geophytic perennial monocot, which is, after all, what we love to discuss
here. They behave exactly as do the western American geophytic Delphinium
species regularly discussed here without cavil, or Tropaeolum, or
Alstroemeria, or Cyclamen, or Narcissus...

To rant about such plants that occasionally pop up in a general discussion
seems unnecessary. We are gardeners here, some perhaps call themselves
plantsmen, and the fringes of our subject should never be excluded: I enjoy
broadening my horizons, not narrowing them. As a group we live in many parts
of the world and to me at least, it is rather interesting if a mini-thread
develops on growing bulbs in a harsh climate, a mild climate, wherever.
Crinums grown in Florida are out of my reach, but it doesn't mean to say I
am not interested. I agree that the core of our discussion should be
'bulbous' plants - whatever they may be - but let us not forget that a core
has a periphery.

And yes, I do grow a grass aloe, A. myriacantha, currently resting out the
dormant season in a pot alongside Gloriosa superba; my succulent aloes are
growing adjacent to my Clivia miniata. Which of these are geophytes?

John Grimshaw

Dr John M. Grimshaw
Garden Manager, Colesbourne Gardens

Sycamore Cottage
Nr Cheltenham
Gloucestershire GL53 9NP

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Rodger Whitlock" <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, November 27, 2004 7:27 PM
Subject: Re: [pbs] BACK UP - Grass Aloes are "sort of" bulbs - NOT

> On 27 Nov 04 at 8:18, James Waddick wrote:
> > Dear Joe and All;
> >  Hate to be a spoil sport, but...
> >  I had to refute comparing grass aloes to bulbs. As far as I
> > know there are no bulbous Aloe. These are herbaceous perennials
> > plain and simple. Don't really mind any discussions especially if
> > any are really Zone 5/6 hardy, but these are not bulbs.
> >
> >  Just a small reality check. Humbug season I suppose.
> I've been out on the web & such long enough to take considerably
> exception to camels' noses when they appear under the edge of the
> tent. The fastest way to ruin any kind of net-forum (newsgroup,
> mailing list, whatever) is to discuss related topics that are not
> actually on-topic. I've seen groups ruined because no body put up a
> fuss when these irrelevancies started to appear, so I'll put up a
> fuss here and now and hope to nip them in the bud.[1]
> I have no shame in being a spoil sport.
> This is NOT a general gardening mailing list. It is NOT a mailing
> list for gardeners in the harsh mid-continent climate of North
> America. IMHO it is a mailing list about *bulbs*, and by courtesy,
> corms, and tubers and rhizomes where these operate as do bulbs.
> And given the history of the PBS, there is a special emphasis on
> amaryllids, esp. those of the New World.
> So please folks, take the grass aloes -- and dare I say it? -- the
> peonies to another forum. Also the rhizomatous irises. And the
> oriental poppies. A plant's dying down in hot dry weather and having
> a fleshy root structure doesn't qualify it for this list. IMHO, of
> course.
> [1] Does my rant get bonus points for making a horticultural analogy?
> -- 
> Rodger Whitlock
> Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
> Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate
> on beautiful Vancouver Island
> _______________________________________________
> pbs mailing list

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