Summer Hits Indiana

J.E. Shields
Sun, 28 May 2006 16:30:25 PDT
Hi all,

Summer has hit Indiana like a sledge hammer!  The temperature this 
afternoon, 89°F, is unusually high for this time of year.  Last winter was 
relatively mild for us here, and lots of the borderline hardy plants that 
were there before have returned this spring.

Irises of all sorts are in bloom, especially the fancy tall bearded 
hybrids.  I. tectorum is in bloom in several places.  I. versicolor is in 
bloom; versicolor comes close to being a native here, but our native 
Indiana iris is considered to be a subspecies of I. virginica.  A nice big 
clump of I. sanguinea 'Kamiyama', dark blue, is in bloom out by the lane; 
we can see it from the kitchen window.

It is reassuring to see the Crinum bulbispermum blooming, both those in the 
ground around one of the home greenhouses, as well as those growing in 
5-gal. (19 L.) containers.  A couple of the C. [bulbispermum roseum X 
lugardiae] in the ground have scapes up and starting to open, as well.

One of the early-flowering Crinum macowanii forms, my #1022, has flowers open.

Gladiolus imbricatus, G. illyricus, and G. italicus, all hardy here and 
growing in the ground, are in bloom.  G. caucasicus, also hardy and growing 
in the ground, are near to blooming.

The Gladiolus oppositiflorus salmoneus growing in the ground are starting 
to send up their first leaves.  Those in pots are still bone dry and 
therefor not trying to grow yet.

The lone clump of Hymenocallis liriosme that I have outdoors in the ground 
is sending up two scapes.  This is its first attempt to flower since having 
been planted outdoors, at the south end of one of the home greenhouses.  I 
got a bunch of bulbs, plants in leaf, actually, of H. liriosme in from a 
lady in Mississippi last week.  In fact, I think I probably cleaned out her 
supply for this season.  I'm still looking for more H. occidentalis, since 
I lost quite a few bulbs a couple years ago when I moved the H. 
occidentalis from pots to outdoor beds.

Near to the liriosme is a clump of Zantedeschia aethiopica 'Green Goddess' 
that has been blooming for almost a month now.  Another Zantedeschia, the 
hybrid 'Black Pearl', was planted in the ground outside the home 
greenhouse, where the Crinums are growing; and these have come back for the 
third year now.  They get a lot of heat leaked through the knee-wall of the 
greenhouse in winter.  Last year, they bloomed in that spot.  I ought to 
try some other Zantedeschia in that same bed.

I do love spring and early summer around here!

Best regards,
Jim Shields
in central Indiana (USA), where a Mr. Hornish apparently won some car race 
this afternoon.

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

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