fawn lily

Mary Sue Ittner msittner@mcn.org
Thu, 28 Mar 2013 09:09:10 PDT
In my northern California coastal climate south of Diana I have found 
a number of Erythroniums easy to grow and flower (and in pots as 
well). I've started a number from NARGS seed exchanges. Some species 
I've sometimes gotten to germinate, but not survive to blooming 
stage. My climate normally gets a fair amount of winter rainfall and 
I've started seed in late fall to early winter and just left it 
outside to be rained on (no special treatment.) Seed started this way 
would come up four to five months later. What may be helpful in my 
case is that  seeds that often came up in February or March were 
still going to have cool temperatures to grow on for a number of 
months. The seeds actually often come up about the time you'd expect 
to see older plants emerge as well.

Species that flower reliably for me each year are E. californicum, E. 
multiscapoideum, E. helenae, E. hendersonii, E. tuolumnense. The 
latter took the longest of any before it started blooming (about 10 
years). I find growing them in pots works better for me as I think 
the soil stays moist better. In the ground the redwood roots from all 
my trees are very greedy going after available water. The roots do 
get into my pots over time as well however even when I've planted 
pots nesting in other pots. In repotting I've pulled out redwood root 
nests from some pots. E. helenae was the quickest to flower (about 3 
years) and is probably my most successful one so I now have it 
growing in multiple places (mostly in raised beds in double pots.) I 
looked for species that were not high elevation species. I've tried 
E. revolutum many times. I've gotten it to germinate without a lot of 
problems, but it dwindles and only once did I ever see a bloom and it 
was from a plant someone gave me. It hasn't rebloomed. I think I 
probably need to give up on it.

Like Diana E. multiscapoideum is the first of mine to come up and 
bloom and E. revolutum  the last to emerge each year. Once again we 
have different methods providing success.

Mary Sue

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