Oporanthous bulbs

Lee Poulsen wpoulsen@pacbell.net
Wed, 29 Aug 2007 11:46:31 PDT
Here's why I like Jim McK's word 'oporanthous': Since I have limited 
space for growing things in my yard, and I also needed to make a place 
where I could put all my dormant pots (to protect winter-growers from 
the hot sun during the summertime and summer-growers from our winter 
rains during the wintertime), I end up having two "great" switchovers 
during the year when things coming out of dormancy trade places with 
those going into dormancy. (The two seasonal groups of plants don't 
always cooperate very well in synchronizing their behaviors every 6 
months!) However, there is one group of summer-dormant plants that I've 
had to make a special place for because their typical bloom season is 
after the middle of our summer, but long before the fall switchover 
occurs. Since they seem to want to bloom in some of the worst heat of 
the year (today it's supposed to get up to 104°F), I don't want them 
too out of the way so that I don't miss them when they do bloom. Plus, 
I can't put them in the shelves I use for most of the other dormant 
pots since then there wouldn't be any space for their bloom scapes. So 
I have some ground space dedicated just for their placement so that 
they don't get watered with all the summer-growing plants, but they 
still can be watered without watering the non-oporanthous dormant pots. 
AND I can watch for and see them bloom when that finally happens, as it 
is right now. (Lycoris, Amaryllis, Nerines, some Crocuses, Colchicums, 
and Sternbergia, Urginea maritima or whatever it's called now, etc.) 
Here in Southern California, they will be done long before any of my 
winter-growers come out of dormancy or before any rains begin to fall.

I think Jim's word is perfect for this group of plants I treat 
differently than all the other types in my collection.

--Lee Poulsen
Pasadena, California, USDA Zone 10a

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