TOW crocus natural increase?

Jane McGary
Thu, 06 Feb 2003 19:22:36 PST
Diane Whitehead wrote
>I mentioned that I have had 5 corms of C. sieberi 'Hubert Edelstein' 
>since 1989.  I guess I should be happy I still have them, but I 
>wonder why they haven't increased.  Does sieberi normally make 
>offsets, or set seed, or both?
>I've just noticed that the winter sun never reaches Hubert, so the 
>flowers never open.  Would it possible for seeds to form without 
>insect activity?  I guess maybe the wind could shake the flower 
>enough, but I have a sheltered garden and miss the common 
>southwesterlies because of the lie of the land.

SOme Crocus sieberi cultivars make a lot of offsets, but 'Hubert Edelsten'
is not one of them. However, it does increase modestly in the bulb frame
(the one that is not very protected) here. 

As far as I know, crocuses are only insect-pollinated, and if they don't
open, they will not be visited, of course. It is amazing to me how the
honeybees arrive here in February to visit the crocuses in great numbers,
despite the fact that these are the only flowers in bloom for miles around.
Only one neighbor and I (I converted her) have crocuses, and nothing native
flowers now.

Jane McGary
NW Oregon

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