Brodiaea, Calochortus, and Triteleia

Mary Sue Ittner
Sun, 10 Nov 2002 10:18:29 PST
Dear Mark and all,

I always love to hear someone talk about Brodiaea and Triteleia and it is nice to hear that Mark has had success with some of these in a colder climate with summer rainfall too. I leave out Calochortus since it is so striking that it gets talked about a lot not that I don't like hearing about it too. Mark demonstrates that with careful planning you can be successful. I able hoping Triteleia, Brodiaea, and Dichelostemma will be the focus of the topic of the week. At least that will be my suggestion to myself. Triteleia bridgesii is a favorite of mine too, but it blooms much earlier here, in May and June. Thanks for giving us a place to see it.

Northwest Natives is a source of wild collected seeds. A careful description of where the seeds are found is included. It would seem it would make it easier to pick which seeds of a species to grow in a colder area. But you never know unless you try. I have a dim memory and hopefully Georgie will correct me if I am wrong, that Jim Robinett told me that sometimes mountain collected seed of some species did better than coast collected seed surprising him. From my  attempts to sort these out I wrote the following about Triteleia laxa. "Triteleia laxa commonly known as wally basket or Ithuriel's spear is found between 0 and 4600 feet  (0 to 1500 meters) in a variety of habitats such as mixed evergreen forests, grassland, foothill woodland, and chaparral throughout much of California and into Oregon. It is found on slopes, but also on flats that are sometimes very wet in spring, often in heavy soils.  The funnel-shaped flowers vary considerably in color (from blue, to violet and purple, occasionally white) and size in different habitats." So it would appear that seed from one location might do very well in a colder climate and not seed from another.

Hopefully today I will be able to send more seed of some of the "open-pollinated" California geophytes I grow to the BX and some of you can try them.

Mary Sue

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