Spring Anemones

totototo@telus.net totototo@telus.net
Wed, 08 Apr 2009 09:31:37 PDT
On 8 Apr 2009, at 11:55, Jim McKenney wrote:

> Anemone blanda is one of those plants which at first seems to do well in our
> gardens. The plants persist for a few years and even seed around
> unobtrusively. However, they are best not regarded as permanent residents:
> they eventually disappear. 

You will be happy to hear that in the summer-dry Pacific Northwest, Anemone 
blanda is an outstanding performer. Even the cultivar 'Radar', a brilliant 
saturated magenta-red and a plant notoriously difficult to acquire true to 
name, grows sufficiently well to allow division of the tubers every once in a 
while. Self-sown seedlings do not occur with any of my Anemone blanda, however, 
though a patch of supposed 'Charmer' clearly came from stock badly contaminated 
with seedlings.

Somehow or other (isn't that always the way?) I have managed to acquire some of 
the rarer forms. 'Scythinica' came from a garden being dismantled before its 
owner sold her house: white with blue reverse to the petals. The 'Charmer' 
mongrels threw up a very pale pink, plus a sort of half-Radar the same color as 
'Radar' but not as saturated. The rest are blues and purplish blues.

Perhaps one of those forms I've segregated from the patch is the true 'Charmer'.

And then there's a mysterious white Anemone blanda with a dull reddish stain at 
the base of the petal reverses.

> Years ago a strain of Anemone fulgens was marketed as St. Bravo strain.

Recte "St. Bavo" after a Netherlandish saint who is the eponym for the 
cathedral of the diocese of Ghent.

A florists' strain of anemone you have overlooked is "St. Piran" which I was 
once able to buy, cheaply, in a  mesh bag (sure signs of a mass-market bulb!) 
in Seattle. I gave them to a friend who was growing for the cutflower trade and 
do not know how they did. Some of these florists' strains of anemones are 
actually seed strains, and the tubers you buy are simply pre-grown seedlings.

> Recently, on another forum, an Israeli commentator mentioned high altitude
> forms of A. coronaria (or was it A. fulgens?) which grow on Mt. Hermon and
> do not begin to bloom until well into the new year. These sound like they
> might be a better choice for us should they ever prove to be available. 

A. fulgens is reputedly a hybrid between A. hortensis and A. pavonina.

> These little anemones are so beautiful – it’s too bad our summers and
> winters are so hard on them.  

Clearly, it's time to pick up house and move to a more congenial climate. 
Having grown up in the next county over from you, I am intimately familiar with 
the lousy summer climate and it amazes me when someone succeeds against the 
odds there.

Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate
on beautiful Vancouver Island


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