What's in bloom now -- Cyrtanthus [elatus X montanus]

J.E. Shields jshields104@insightbb.com
Fri, 22 Nov 2002 08:00:09 PST
Hi Mary Sue and all,

Well, I will share them if I can figure out what my secrets are for growing and blooming Cyrtanthus [elatus X montanus].  First, I think you are headed in the right direction by potting up.  My larger bulbs are about 3 inches in diameter (ca. 20 cm. circumference) and individually in 7 inch standard clay pots or 1.5 gal. black plastic nursery containers.  They are growing in my "gritty mix" -- Promix + sand + granite chick starter grit, ca. 2  1  1 proportions by volume.

They are in the greenhouse in winter, with some shade compound painted on the glass.  In summer, they are outdoors in full sun.

They do not grow continuously, but when I see new growth starting, I begin watering more regularly and feeding occasionally with soluble Peters 20-20-20.  I think that the bulbs spontaneously pause every few months to rest.  I probably water less often when they are "pausing" but I have not kept track of it in the past.  I don't think I ever let them get totally desiccated.

These plants also produce myriad small bulbils and some offsets.  I now discard the bulbils, but I have potted the offsets up separately sometime in the past year.  I'll probably occasionally offer them for sale as they reach bloom size.

I'll keep better records of when they bloom in the future, starting with right now.  Then we won't have to depend on my swiss cheese memory for information.

Jim Shields
in central Indiana

Jim Shields             USDA Zone 5             Shields Gardens, Ltd.
P.O. Box 92              WWW    http//http://www.shieldsgardens.com/
Westfield, Indiana 46074, USA                   Tel. +1-317-896-3925

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