Spring Bulb Misc

Jane McGary janemcgary@earthlink.net
Sun, 27 Apr 2008 21:42:32 PDT
Jim Waddick wrote,
         Arum- various species are emerging now and I am curious why
>these are not more widely grown

I think many gardeners avoid them because A. italicum is viewed (at least 
here in the Pacific Northwest) as a trash plant. I like it, though, and 
grow several cultivars -- but I have a very big garden with fast-draining 
soil, which keeps it under control by drying it out more than it 
appreciates in summer.

One weedy species can condemn an entire genus in the minds of unadventurous 
gardeners. Ornithogalum and Muscari are good examples (though the latter 
has more than one weedy member). Some gardeners here feel this way about 
Anemone nemorosa, which Jim praised, but I can't see why: it's so little it 
can't possibly outcompete anything it might grow near.

Jim went on,
>         Aril-bred and oncocyclus iris are putting up flowering stems
>now  as Junos in the same beds are fading away. Again I don't know
>why these desert iris species and numerous hybrids are not more
>widely grown.

I think (a) they are hard to get and expensive, and (b) as Jim noted they 
require special care, which here would include overhead protection in 
winter and constant spraying to quell the leaf pathogens to which they are 
very susceptible in mild, wet weather. I grow a few, but only in the bulb 

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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