Hardiness of Haemanthus

J.E. Shields jshields@indy.net
Thu, 04 Aug 2005 17:45:06 PDT
Hi Paul and all,

Actually, this is very useful data.  It makes the tolerance of H. coccineus 
tangible!  Temperature of -8°C is about +18°F, which is quite respectably 
cold.   Thanks very much.

Your comment on H. barkerae is interesting too, because I have some 
barkerae that flower pretty reliably in pots.

I produced some hybrid seedlings of H. [humilis hirsutus X coccineus] a few 
years ago.  They may be my most promising bet for frost tolerance in 
Haemanthus.  I'm sure they are true hybrids, because hirsutus is the seed 
parent and they have the red leaf margins of the coccineus (pollen) 
parent.  The leaves are not very hairy, either -- at least not so far.  The 
seedlings are about 3 years old now, and in their summer dormancy.

George Mann in South Africa commented that H. humilis humilis is found in 
the mountains of Lesotho, where it regularly gets winter temperatures of 
-3°C (ca. 26°F).

I appreciate the comments I have received, on list and privately.

Jim Shields
in central Indiana (USA)

At 08:40 AM 8/5/2005 +1000, Paul wrote:

>This may not be anything new to you by way of information, but Haemanthus
>coccineus doesn't skip a beat during winter here in Canberra,
>Australia.  Planted out in the open (i.e nowhere near the eaves or against
>walls or anything like that) it sails through -8'C at least each winter
>(even in 8 inch black plastic pots that tend to magnify the cold to the
>roots it doesn't have a problem at all).  Plenty of -5'C and below through
>winter, but I don't know exact figures (but could probably find out for you
>if you want). I realise that in the scheme of things this is negligible
>cold, but thought it might be at least some data you didn't have.
>I don't have either humilis or montanus so I can't help there.  I know that
>H. albiflos gets toasted if it gets frosted here, but that it does
>regenerate later on even if frosted, and in most cases even flower despite
>the short duration of the leaves.  This is an observation from a friend's
>garden not my own.  Mine are protected.  I also have H. barkerae in
>slightly less protected area and it doesn't have any problems but it is not
>exposed to much cold there either.
>Paul Tyerman
>Canberra, Australia.

Jim Shields             USDA Zone 5             Shields Gardens, Ltd.
P.O. Box 92              WWW:    http://www.shieldsgardens.com/
Westfield, Indiana 46074, USA
Tel. ++1-317-867-3344     or      toll-free 1-866-449-3344 in USA

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