Jane McGary janemcgary@earthlink.net
Tue, 27 May 2003 15:47:55 PDT
Mary Sue wrote,  Dichelostemma ida-maia has the reputation for being the 
most challenging from seed and may benefit from a wide range of 
temperatures between day and night for success.

I assume this means growing it from stored seed? I certainly have no 
problem "growing" it from seed here, where it has thoroughly infested one 
bulb frame by seeding and then pulling the bulbs down below a wire barrier 
where I can't get at them, as Lauw de Jager mentioned is a habit of D. 
volubile too. This deep delving no doubt protects them against mice and 
voles; however, the above-ground plant is sought by deer and (I think) rabbits.

By the way, I got a planting of Lilium rubescens (the small California 
relative of L. washingtonianum) past the rabbits this year by surrounding 
each stem with a cylinder of hardware cloth (stiff, closely netted wire 
mesh) about 10 inches (25 cm) high. I think it kept the slugs out, too. I 
pinned the cylinders down with groundcloth staples.

D. ida-maia has survived about 5 years in the open garden here, receiving a 
little summer water and experiencing temperatures as low as 5 F (minus 15 
C). I was not able to establish D. volubile outside the frames. D. 
congestum and D. capitatum are easy garden plants for us.

What are some opinions on the parentage of the commercially available 
cultivar Dichelostemma 'Pink Diamond'? I've seen it called a selection of 
D. ida-maia, which it resembles in flower form. However, it is about the 
color of D. volubile and has a twining stem. Could it be a hybrid of the 
two? I'll have to see what it does in the garden.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon

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