Rigidella orthantha

Paul Tyerman ptyerman@ozemail.com.au
Sat, 23 Oct 2004 15:51:10 PDT
At 04:30  24/10/04, you wrote:
>I purchased 1 bulb of Ridigidella orthantha very early this year (around 
>Feb or March).  I planted it at the corner of my house and nothing 
>happened all spring or summer...  I figured it was dead, but today I found 
>a great big leaf growing out the ground right where I planted it.  Being 
>in Cincinnati Ohio we could hit freezing temps any day now.  Would you 
>advise I pot it up and bring it indoors?  Or let it outside to 
>adjust?  Does this species tend to be a winter grower or a summer 
>grower?  I thought it would behave just like my Tigridias, but it 
>certainly hasn't so far!


For me here in Canberra, Australia Rigidella is definitely summer growing 
(as I think it is in its natural state).  It shoots rather late in 
spring/early summer, flowering in early January here and growing through 
until autumn from memory.  It is definitely in a cycle where it would be 
least likely to experience frost here, that is for sure! <grin>

This species has quite extensive fleshy roots underneath the bulb, so care 
must be taken to keep this moist at all times as far as I know.  It is 
picky about being moved due to these root disturbances (or so I have been 
told) and needs excellent drainage.  It definitely likes to be left alone 
once in a place where it is happy, so mine has been undisturbed for a 
number of years now, slowly producing offsets and even seed one year.  It 
flowers most years for me and the colour is stunning, being a rich orangey 
red that is almost electric.  Definitely well worth finding it's ideal 
habitat for, as it is a stunner when in flower.

Hopefully someone in your own hemisphere can give you more idea of the 
actual timing (i.e normal months of growth) that you could expect from it 
where you are.  Obviously enough, the months I mention above don't mean 
much to you, but it does give you an idea that yours is growing closer to 
the cycle of my hemisphere rather than your own..... I'd be expecting mine 
to start shooting in around 6 weeks or so I'd think.

Good luck.


Paul Tyerman
Canberra, Australia.  USDA equivalent - Zone 8/9

Growing.... Galanthus, Erythroniums, Fritillarias, Trilliums, Cyclamen, 
Crocus, Cyrtanthus, Oxalis, Liliums, Hellebores, Aroids, Irises plus just 
about anything else that doesn't move!!!!!

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