Crocus niveus in a cold climate
Sat, 13 Nov 2004 14:14:47 PST
"Boyce Tankersley" wrote:

>Do you think Crocus niveus would survive in the 
>Chicago region, blooming as late as it does? 
>We got our first killing frost in late September, 
>then had a couple of nice weeks of Indian 
>summer. Weather since then has been on the 
>cool side but no real dips into the lower 20's yet.

Hi Boyce,

A two-fold response.

Regarding Crocus niveus, it's a splendid species which has flowered well 
since I received corms in 2000.  I'm in northern New England, so my climate might 
be somewhat similar to yours, in terms of the cold weather arriving at the 
same time the fall crocus begin blooming.  We too, had killing frosts in 
September.  In the past seevral weeks we've had many nights of deep frosts (down to 20 
F) and as of last weekend, there were still some flowers on this species and 
several other crocus (tournefortii, goulimyi, serotinus, pallasii, and the 
tiny Colchicum cupanii).  I can't tell if it's still in bloom now, as we had 3 
inches of wet snow last night, which is freezing up into a white crust today and 
tonight.  If tomorrow warms up and the snow melts a little bit, I'll check to 
see if it still has more buds.

What I particularly like about C. niveus, is just how many blooms each corm 
can make in  succession over a period of many weeks.  I have both the pure 
white form and the more common form that is ever so slightly tinged with violet.  
I think you should try it.  Oh, almost forgot, the flowers are nicely perfumed.

Second item... Boyce, I recall an email I received from you, which I have 
surely lost in the mad scattered chaos that characterizes my email inbox (and 
based on AOL's annoying habit of deleting emails one keeps in one's inbox that 
are a month old or so).  So, please accept my apology for not getting back to 
you, and I hope that we can pick up where we left off.  Your PBS message jolted 
my memory of the lost email and the overdue response.

Cheers to you and PBS'rs at large,

Mark McDonough Pepperell, Massachusetts, United States "New England" USDA Zone 5
>> web site under construction - <<
alliums, bulbs, penstemons, hardy hibiscus, western 
american alpines, iris, plants of all types!

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