Crocus corsicus

Jane McGary
Sun, 07 Aug 2005 17:07:45 PDT
Paul Chapman wrote,
>However, Crocus corsicus seems to have behaved differently to everything
>else that I have yet repotted (and I am doing things more or less
>alphabetically).  My label says that in 2003 I repotted 24 corms.  Today
>there were 54 - but none were large, certainly not what I would consider to
>be flowering size, and many were tiny, no bigger than Fritillaria "rice".
>Does Crocus corsicus need special treatment to achieve flowering size bulbs?

I don't know why crocuses do this -- whether it is environmental, or just 
some "timed" thing they do after a big corm has grown for so many years. C. 
corsicus is far from the only one that can behave this annoying way. It 
flowers well for me most years in a bulb frame, where it gets about the 
same water regime that Paul describes, but colder winters and hotter 
summers. It also blooms well most years in the open garden, where it is 
irrigated in summer. This isn't a species that requires summer drying, and 
in fact the ones in the frame are watered infrequently all summer.

Some crocus species can grow for years and years without ever making more 
than one or two big offsets (the Sativi section is mostly like this, except 
for C. sativus itself, which is a sterile triploid). Others politely make 
medium-sized offsets and retain their flowering-size corms, such as C. 
biflorus most years, C. pulchellus, and other popular garden subjects. And 
then some specialize in these little cormlets that take 2 or 3 years to 
flower, if they don't die.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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