Oxalis question

320083817243-0001@t-online.de 320083817243-0001@t-online.de
Thu, 26 Sep 2002 15:29:35 PDT
Dear Mary Sue and dear All,

Many of the Oxalis produce a fleshy beet-like quite thick and succulent 
root-related structure during active growth. For example Oxalis triangularis, a beautiful red-leaved cultivar does this. I was surprised to find enormous 
amounts of this kind of root when I dug up plants that were planted in the open ground in the garden in the autumn to keep them from frost. They were still in full growth. I put them into a tray in a cool and dry place but without soil and they dried down slowly. What remained were just the small caterpillar-like dry corms, the thick fleshy structure had completely disappeared. I found the same in Soth African Oxalis which I dug (I thought I had got a very good tuber only to find a tiny corm in the bag after everything had dried down) I am pretty certain that presence of this fleshy structure shows that the plant is NOT dormant but in active growth. I do not grow Oxalis brasiliensis but would'nt this be a summer grower? Were there any leaves when you repotted it? I can also imagine that these fleshy structures act as water reservoir for the growing plant and during dormany this water is just not needed.

The plants I distributed under the name of Oxalis bowiei are defintely from 
Mexico and not South African. (unless two very different and very knowlegeable donors made the same mistake, who knows?) I grow two pots from different sources, the plants are absolutey identical, one is labelled O. bowiei and the other O.debilis but this is defintely wrong. I am not sure about the correctness of the name O. bowiei. It still is my best Oxalis and it has a peculiar growth pattern: starting very early in summer, blooming profusely now, remaining in leaf until about April/May and having to be litterally forced into dormany in late spring and early summer. It will remain green if contiuously watered but will not flower well this way. It unfortunately does not multiply that quickly...... I admit it sounds pretty much like a South African growth rhythm, but it is ever so reluctant to go dormant in summer.... very unlike all south african Oxalis I grow that start to look peculiar as soon as the temperature in the greenhouse rises in spring and will disappear quickly soon afterwards. 

Oxalis flava from Mary Sue tries to steal the show from O.bowiei at the 
moment..... but its flower stalks are too long and too weak for its giant 
yellow flower so it tends to hang down.... I remenber having seen it in a South African nursery having the same habit but less pronounced under more intense  light.
Has anybody ever managed to create an Oxalis hybrid? or harvest seed at all? 
(except the devilish annual ones, of course)

Greetings from cool and rainy Germany, Uli

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