siting giant Crocosmias

David Fenwick Snr.
Mon, 14 Nov 2005 13:44:49 PST
>>>>>I have been looking at mine each weekend and wondering whether it would 
>>>>>weaken the plant and cause non-flowering to cut down the foliage now.
It's still green and healthy looking but lying horizontally across
everything else in the bed. Does anyone else cut down their C foliage before 
it turns brown?

Hi Janet,
It's OK to cut stems of tall masoniorum and paniculata hybrids half way, 
especially in exposed, windy areas, as this will prevent the scape tearing 
away and damaging the corm below, of course any tearing could later lead to 

Regarding the leaves though I generally leave mine on until late February 
here, in colder areas the leaves could be left until late March. The dead / 
dying leaves give a degree of frost protection and insulate the soil. Here 
they are also used by hedgehogs who regularly roll the leaves into a ball 
and hibernate in them.

To tidy up I generally wait for a dry spell in February and make a small 
fire inside a metal wheelbarrow and then burn the dead leaves of all the 
Crocosmia, which by then, depart from the part very easily; a whole 
collection burnt tidied and looking good in a couple of hours and then of 
course I sprinkle the ashes back on them. Waste not want not.

Re. staking, infrequently, I simply use a bamboo cane, cut it to the desired 
height around the neck on the clump and then with strong string form a loop 
around the plant and tie off at the top of the cane. Of course larger 
hybrids, those over 6ft tall may need individual staking during 

But bulk of the Crocosmia collection here is grown in 21m long beds, 
everything is supported by a hoop and string system, the string running from 
one end of the bed to the other. The string supports the plants in summer 
but also in conjunction with the hoops, supports a fleece in the winter and 
keeps it off emerging growth.

Best Wishes,

David Fenwick Snr.
The African Garden
96 Wasdale Gardens,
Estover, Plymouth, Devon. England.
Tel:  44 (0)1752 301402

NCCPG National Plant Reference Collections of
Crocosmia with Chasmanthe, Tulbaghia,
Eucomis with Galtonia, Freesia (Anomatheca Group) and Amaryllis

The African Garden
Wildflowers of the Devon and Cornwall Peninsula
Wildlife of the Devon and Cornwall Peninsula
Crocosmia Heritage 

No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG Free Edition.
Version: 7.1.362 / Virus Database: 267.13.0/167 - Release Date: 11/11/2005

More information about the pbs mailing list