Tropoleum sps

Jane McGary
Mon, 01 Sep 2014 13:13:36 PDT
I think Iain is probably writing about Tropaeolum speciosum, which is 
famously well adapted to Scotland. It is unlike the other species we 
were discussing in that it has a spreading root system once 
established (establishing it at first can be difficult). It is native 
to the Lake District of south central Chile, which is moist and cool 
(like Scotland). I have seen it growing well in gardens on the Oregon coast.

Tropaeolum tricolorum and Tropaeolum azureum can achieve a couple of 
meters in height when climbing but are of a very light habit and 
would not harm supporting plants.

Some other large species of Tropaeolum, such as T. polyphyllum and T. 
tuberosum, produce more than one tuber and can spread by making new 
crowns from these tubers. The ones we discussed don't seem ever to 
make more than a single tuber. The tubers resemble potatoes and those 
of at least some species are edible. One sees this type in rocky 
areas and around stream beds, where the new tubers presumably are 
disturbed and spread around. I have seen wonderful specimens in the 
gravel banks of railroads.

Jane McGary
Portland, oregon, USA

, which At 12:48 PM 9/1/2014, you wrote:
>As Jane points out these plants are seen to their best with 
>something to clamber over but be careful
>what you wish for as once they got going here there was no stopping 
>them scrambling over dwarf
>conifers, climbing up lily stems until the weight bent them over and 
>charging around and up our Betula
>and Sorbi collections, etc.
>At the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh where, amongst other 
>things, they specialise in Chilean
>plants these roughians are raging through, under, over and up 
>amongst the extensive Chinese specie
>Rhododendron collection amongst much else besides. I think some of 
>the staff are giving up the will to
>live. Here despite short growing season at c. 57+ degrees North with 
>minimum - 20 + C there is no
>stopping them now and I spend much too much time trying to rip them 
>out each Spring and Autumn
>while in leaf. With a pH of 4.5 they just love it here, any 
>suggestions as to poor winter hardiness are
>much over stated. No dry periods here, rain, frost or snow like 
>manna from heaven. But for my wife
>these ????? plants would be out of here now we know what potential 
>menaces if allowed to naturalise.

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