Zantedeschia hardiness

Tony Avent
Thu, 18 Jun 2009 05:36:55 PDT
John and others:

FYI, we are growing two wild collected forms (2005) in addition to the 
many named cultivars of Z. aethiopica.  Both have fared well through out 
2008/9 winter, which hit 7-9 degrees F in this section of the garden.  
One is from Eastern Cape Province: Stutterheim; 3330' elevation and the 
other is from the West. Cape Prov.: Swartsberg Pass 4346' elevation.  
Both are growing very well, but the Western Cape plant is much taller 
and more robust.   I will put these on the list to divide in the future 
and it will be interesting to see how they fare where other clones have 

Tony Avent

Plant Delights Nursery @
Juniper Level Botanic Garden
9241 Sauls Road
Raleigh, North Carolina  27603  USA
Minimum Winter Temps 0-5 F
Maximum Summer Temps 95-105F
USDA Hardiness Zone 7b
phone 919 772-4794
fax  919 772-4752
"I consider every plant hardy until I have killed it least three times" - Avent

John Grimshaw wrote:
> Jim McKenney wrote:
>> I've had problems with Z. aethiopica too, but I think the root of that is
>> that this species is a winter grower which only very reluctantly changes
>> seasons.
> This issue has been touched on but I think not yet fully explored. 
> Zantedeschia aethiopica has a wide range in South Africa, encompassing both 
> winter and summer rainfall areas.
> It seems sensible to me to assume that most importations of Zantedeschia 
> aethiopica have been from the area around Cape Town, where it is very 
> common, even growing at the very tip of Cape Point. These winter growers 
> would certainly be tender in northern Europe, necessitating the glasshouse 
> culture/underwater techniques to survive.
> I have collected seed of Z. aethiopica on the Sani Pass, in Kwa-Zulu-Natal, 
> a classic summer-rainfall location and source of many hardy plants for UK 
> gardens. The seedlings are absolutely hardy here and flower in midsummer.
> Mulling over it, I came to the thought some time ago, that the generally 
> reliably hardy clones in the UK, e.g. the old but unspecial 'Crowborough' 
> and the recently named 'Glencoe', are probably from the summer-rainfall 
> area, though this is impossible to prove. If so, it demonstrates the 
> importance of provenance when selecting South African material for garden 
> use. (Another plant with similarly wide distribution  in SA & reputation for 
> tenderness is Melianthus major: again, one suspects that most seed has come 
> from the Western Cape, and one wonders how material from the Drakensberg 
> would fare.)
> The pink-throated form of Z. aethiopica also seems to be entirely hardy 
> here, and occurs in eastern south Africa somewhere as a wild plant.
> Z. albomaculata survives outside here, but is late to emerge, and does not 
> flower very freely.
> John Grimshaw
> All messages in my Inbox received between September 2008 and 30 May 2009 
> have been deleted: please resend anything you feel is important!
> Dr. John M. Grimshaw
> Sycamore Cottage
> Colesbourne
> Cheltenham
> Gloucestershire
> GL53 9NP
> Tel. 01242 870567
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