Tecophilaea info

Jane McGary janemcgary@earthlink.net
Sun, 09 Jul 2006 11:41:40 PDT
Mary Sue wrote,

"There are a lot of people on this list who grow Tecophilaea. What is your
>experience? Do you find it increases well from offsets?"

In northwestern Oregon I have to grow Tecophilaea cyanocrocus in an 
unheated bulb frame, where it is kept dry in summer. Mine increase slightly 
slower than Lee's do, usually just one or two offsets a year. Most years, 
they set seed, but this year only one potful produced seed; I think this 
happened because there was a severe cold snap about the time they should 
have been fertilized, and either there were no pollinators present (I 
didn't hand-pollinate them, being out of town at the time) or it was simply 
too cold for fertilization to take place. The group that set seed are a 
different seed-grown population and bloom a little later than the others.

The seeds germinate well but don't always form corms. I've tried growing 
these plants in a cool but frost-free solarium, but there, they become 
elongated and do not flower. I haven't lost any in the bulb frame in about 
14 years of keeping them there, although temperatures inside the frame have 
gone down to 20 F. I started with 3 corms purchased from Potterton's in the 
UK and now have about 20 plants, but I do sell some corms every other year 
and give seed most years (not this year, sorry) to the NARGS exchange.

Incidentally I had a nice visit last week with Arnold Trachtenberg and his 
wife and daughter, who were vacationing on the West Coast; they were then 
heading down to visit Diana Chapman and perhaps Mary Sue Ittner. It's 
always fun at last to meet people one has corresponded with for years on 

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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