Mary Sue Ittner
Fri, 20 Jun 2003 17:36:48 PDT
Dear All,

It appears that not many of us must grow this genus. I hope that the 
discussion this week will have made some of you more interested in trying 
them. It sounds like there are a number of people hooked on Triteleia and 
Brodiaea should be just as successful.

As for sources of bulbs Telos Rare Bulbs and our own Diana Chapman sells 
them. Also it is always a good idea to check out Jane McGary's surplus list 
each year because you could find some listed there. Far West Bulb Farm 
bought out the Robinetts. I have never ordered from them and they did not 
respond to my invitation to join our list, but they do have quite a lot of 
California native bulbs listed on their web site.

You see seed listed in various seed exchanges and  the PBS BX too. My 
experience with seed exchanges is that the seed listed could be right or 
not. You can get something very wonderful or something you already have. 
Many of us continue to sing the praises of Ron Ratko and Northwest Native 
17595 Vierra Canyon Rd #172, Prunedale, CA 93907
For eleven years he has been offering wild collected seed from the Western 
United States. His last catalog had 39 different collections of Alliums 
listed, 6 Brodiaeas, 37 Calochortus, 5 Dichelostemmas, 17 Erythroniums, 14 
Fritillarias, 21 Iris, 14 Lilium, 8 Triteleia, and 2 Zigadenus. Of course 
he has seeds of many other plants as well.

In the 1998 catalog I ordered seed of Brodiaea terrestris ssp. kernensis. I 
started it in the fall of 1999 and it started blooming for the first time a 
week or so ago. He described it thus: Evans Flat, Greenhorn Mtns., Kern 
Co., Ca. 6050 feet (1844 meters). A slightly more robust form that the 
following collection with the 6+ flowered umbels on 4-6" scapes with 1 inch 
flowers. Open gravelly flats in a marginally loamy soil. Montane forest.

I would expect this plant therefore to be relatively hardy. It doesn't look 
like a Brodiaea terrestris to me at all. It looks much more like B. 
jolonensis to me. That species is not supposed to be found in this area and 
has a relatively limited range in coastal southern California to Baja. So I 
am just calling it sp. for now. It is another short one, but I think the 
flowers are quite beautiful. Mine only have three flowers in an umbel 
however. Did he actually see these flowers (he described them by size so he 
must have) or did he arrive on the seed and expect them to be the species 
described because that is what you'd expect to find there? Could this be a 
different species of is the range of the other broader than we think? I am 
reminded that Georgie Robinett told me when you are plant exploring you see 
all kinds of interesting variations that don't fit in any of your keys. 
Regardless I am happy to have this plant and it is one of the joys of 
growing plants from seed.…

Before we leave this topic surely there must be some others in our group 
who grow Brodiaeas who will tell us which ones are their favorites.

Mary Sue

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