Eucomis - TOW-Hardiness

David Fenwick
Mon, 18 Aug 2003 08:35:17 PDT
In the wild Sentinel Peak regularly gets -10C each year.
Thus species such as E. schijffii, E. autumnalis ssp. clavata and E. bicolor
should be OK. However, I should imagine that those grown from seed collected
from such areas may be a little hardier than those collected from lower
altitudes. I have them hear in the heaviest soil on the garden, a clay loam,
buried 6 - 7 inches deep, and they come back annually, with temps down
to -5C with no problem and no mulch.

Here I plant bulbs just deeper than the worst frost can penetrate, and this
seems to work here. Thus if the frosts penetrate to 12 inches in Chicago,
try planting them 13 inches deep. I think it would be wise to plant mature
bulbs this depth though. Remember the deeper you go in the soil, the more
stable the temperature, and thus freak warm winter temps. shouldn't break

One other tip is to go out into the garden early in the morning after a
heavy frost. Watch the sun come up, and note where the frost melts first.
Thus by planting in these areas, which will get less frost, you'll find a
little microclimate for them.

Best Wishes,


David Fenwick
NCCPG National Collection of Crocosmia with Chasmanthe and Tulbaghia
The African Garden
96 Wasdale Gardens

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