Frit pudica

Jane McGary
Sun, 07 Jul 2002 10:34:27 PDT
Fritillaria pudica is native within an hour's drive of my home, but I
cannot grow it outdoors (this is not an unusual situation in the
mountainous North American Pacific Coast). However, it grows extremely well
in my unheated bulb frame, probably because it does not get such a long wet
season in winter. I grow it much as Tony Goode describes, except that my
compost is about equal parts coarse sharp sand, screened loam, and ground
white pumice, with both granular and liquid fertilizer, and I repot them
every second year instead of the longer interval Tony describes. It is a
bit warmer in summer and colder in winter here than at his place, and I
know that we have differential success with some other bulbs. 

F. pudica is very widespread (the widest range of American frits) so the
population from which your seeds come may affect success. If I were in
Australia, I'd try to get seed from the coastal Californian populations
rather than the inland Northwest ones, which experience rather dry, cold
winters with snow and very hot, dry summers. 

Plants should not sprout in fall as Rob Hamilton describes but should wait
until late winter.

Of the other American frits Rob mentions, F. affinis  and biflora are very
easy and adaptable, but F. atropurpurea is known to be difficult. The
latter is an inland species but not a "monsoon" climate dweller and grows
in areas of distinct cold, snowy winters. F phaeanthera is now called F.
eastwoodiae, and I have found it has a tendency to be shorter-lived than
other species. Some other American frits that are particularly easy to grow
are F. liliacea, F. pluriflora, F. agrestis, F. viridea (not very pretty),
F. glauca. F. glauca should probably be grown from seed, not from the
commercial stock, which I have heard is now virused.

Jane McGary
NW Oregon

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