vegetative propagation TOW

Rodger Whitlock
Thu, 08 May 2003 10:08:49 PDT
On  4 May 03 at 21:43, Diane Whitehead wrote:

> One lecture ... given by Paul Christian in 1989 at a
> study weekend at Edmonds Community College near Seattle.

> Use a systemic fungicide like Benlate, but take care as it is 
> carcinogenic. [I think this is no longer sold.  I use powdered
> sulphur]

He recommended benomyl as a general hygienic measure, with sulfur 
packed into the wounds as a localized treatment. In his words 
(approximately) the great advantage of sulfur as a fungicide is that 
it stays where you put it and it lasts a long time.
> Gently moisten perlite, 25 parts perlite to 1 part water.  The
> vermiculite he can buy in England promotes penicillium molds. 

The recommended approach to getting the right amount of water into 
the perlite was to soak it, then put it in a plastic bag with a slit 
at the bottom and let it drain overnight. I have since found this 
exact recommnendation given in the old Rockwell-Grayson-DeGraaf 
"The Complete Book of Lilies".

> Trillium
> The rhizome is actually a horizontal stem, with dormant buds in the
> axils along it.  If you remove the growing point, and sulphur the
> wound, the growing point will grow, and the dormant buds will start
> to grow.   You can also slice the whole rhizome in quarter inch
> slices (.6 cm), trying to get a brown growth ring on each, sulphur
> and put in perlite.  It may take a year for the buds to break.

I've been told of yet another mutilatory method: use a sharp knife 
to cut a lateral slit along the length of the rhizome, one on each 
side and penetrating perhaps 1/4 the thickness of the rhizome. 
Adventitious shoots arise along the length of the wound. YMMV. 

> Sanguinaria canadensis fl pl - Double bloodroot
> Slice into 1 inch sections (2.5 cm) and burn the ends over a candle.

"Sear", not "burn", over a candle flame. This is a lot harder to do 
than you might think; I've scorched a few sanguinaria rhizomes trying 

> Crocus  - don't usually have to propagate them, as most do well on
> their own. Do this to ones that don't increase well, like sieberi
> Bowles' White, and various colour forms of banaticus.  Scoop out the
> top.  Sulphur. 4 or 5 bulblets will form.

My notes from the same lecture say regarding crocuses, not "scoop out 
the top" a la cyclamen and arisaema, but "pluck out the main growing 
point". When you do this, dormant buds on the surface of the corm 
(which is an axially compressed stem) will then break into growth. 
Incidentally, I've found C. sieberi 'Bowles White' to be a reasonable 
multiplier in the garden here. 

> Fritillaria pyrenaica yellow form.
> The bulb has two scales.  Pull it in half.  One has the new shoot
> and will flower next year as usual.  The other scale will form a new
> growing point and it will flower the next year also.

This is generally true of fritillaria and corydalis.

Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate

on beautiful Vancouver Island

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