Colchicum etc

John Lonsdale
Thu, 01 Aug 2002 07:13:17 PDT
Hi Paul,

I'm not familiar with the new snowdrop you mention (Galanthus enmasse), do
you have a photograph please ?

I struggle mightily (read - 'fail miserably') with Colchicum luteum - I've
tried bulbs inside, outside and this year will go for my ladies chamber.  I
came close to flowering it last year and got a couple of nice yellow buds
but they aborted and rotted (in the greenhouse) in our whacky warm fall.
Although spring flowering, both it and some potted kesselringii tried to
flower in the fall, and of course failed.  The bulbs are fine though and did
grow on.  I have sown 100s of seeds of luteum and only germinated 3.  In
contrast C. kesselringii sets seed readily and it germinates well - likewise
for seed I've had from elsewhere.  I've also collected and sown seed of C.
szovitsii and it germinates well.  Others I've tried are much poorer - but
this was always stored seed.

I grow many species of dwarf colchicums (probably around 25), mostly in pots
as I'm bulking them up to try some outside.  Earlier attempts were not
successful although C. cupanii does just fine, even though the snow and ice
burns the leaves back somewhat badly by winter's end.  The big species are
all together under a redbud, or they were until the redbud died this spring.
They should be fine but it gives me more urgency to lift and divide the
bulbs - they've been in there for 4 years now and are way overcrowded.


Dr John T Lonsdale
407 Edgewood Drive
PA 19341  USA

610 594 9232 - phone
801 327 1266 - fax

> Spring is well on its way here in Canberra.  Crocus species bursting into
> bloom, Galanthus enmasse,  Jonquils and violets everywhere, Hellebores in
> wonderful clumps, Fritillarias emerging, Camellias starting and so much
> more.  The Spring Blossom trees are starting to put forth their flowers as
> well.

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