Cyclamen in the midwest

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 17:37:27 PDT
 Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow.

-----Original Message-----
From: []
On Behalf Of Jane McGary
Sent: Monday, July 30, 2012 4:15 PM
To: Pacific Bulb Society
Subject: Re: [pbs] Cyclamen in the midwest

Peter wrote
>Cyclamen graecum usually, but not always, dies if the tuber freezes. It 
>is a crevice plant with a tap root and can be grown in rocks or under 
>some inches of gravel.

Actually the tuber of C. graecum doesn't have a "tap root." It has quite a
few stout perennial roots emerging from the bottom of the tuber, and a kind
of "neck" coming from the top, from the end of which the leaves and flowers
grow. I should know -- I just unpotted and planted out 7 or 8 of them that
were as much as 15 years old from seed, and they are huge. As Peter
suggests, mine will be under a couple of inches of gritty soil and about 2
inches of gravel, among chunks of tufa as they often grow in the wild (I
can't provide terra rossa soil, though). I put a lot of C. mirabile in the
same bed; it is a smaller, less showy species but has lovely foliage.

I just cleaned quite a bit of C. graecum seed and will send it to the BX. I
hope it mostly goes to California, where it ought to be grown much more

Rodger wrote that C. hederifolium should be planted just under deciduous
trees, and it does grow well in that kind of site, but it also grows well
here in the Northwest under conifers (and in lawns!). 
I often recommend it for difficult dry sites under trees or shrubs where
little else will thrive. In nature I have seen it a lot under pines and
evergreen oaks, hollies, etc. The only problem is that you have a bare space
for a couple of months in summer.

Jane McGary
Portland, Oregon, USA

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