Lee Poulsen
Fri, 10 Sep 2004 10:57:37 PDT
On Sep 9, 2004, at 7:52 PM, Mary Sue Ittner wrote:
> but Jim McKenney has at last made me want to write.

I appreciate Jim's contributions to the list immensely and even on 
those rare occasions when I have little to no interest in the species 
topic he is writing on (usually because it's something that just 
doesn't grow in southern Calif.), I have made it a regular practice of 
mine to *always* read the tag line he puts after his signature (even if 
it grows into a paragraph of its own, as one recently did).

> Reading Jim McKenney's remarks about bulbs appearing in the fall when 
> his garden is at its peak reminds me of how different our growing 
> conditions are on this pbs list. Like Angelo it has been a long time 
> since we've had rain here, May for us. Everything is bone dry and 
> dusty and the fire danger is high. Gardens are asleep just waiting for 
> the wake up call with the first rains. Some of the bulbs are shooting 
> out and even blooming, but they aren't going to last very long since 
> we have been having a really hot spell and everything is so dry.

This is even more true in the southern part of the state. So even 
though I have some summer growers that I keep watered and they bloom, 
it's the flowers that suddenly appear in late summer on their own, even 
before the rains return, that are such a delight. First, there have 
been the Amaryllises and Lycoris (and that Habranthus that popped up in 
the Lycoris pot), and now the first of the Nerine sarniensis hybrids 
are starting to send up scapes. I went out to check and sure enough the 
first of the Cyclamens are now blooming. And luckily I went and checked 
among the dormant pots to find the bulb of Calostemma purpurea that I 
got from Telos has four scapes with one fully open with far more 
flowers in it than it has had before. Nice. Several of the Amaryllises 
were the ones we got from Les Hannibal a few years ago that have 
finally bloomed for me and they are magnificent. Some really intense 
magentas and one of the whites has really thick, waxy, and broad petals 
on large flowers. Beautiful.

> A number of years ago I won some Bravoa geminiflora at a California 
> Horitcultural Society auction being grown by someone with hot summers. 
> It bloomed very nicely the first year, but hasn't since. This year it 
> looks the best it has since I got it, but still no blooms. I'm 
> wondering if it isn't happy with my temperatures. Does anyone on our 
> list grow it?

I have some of this, grown from seed, although I have it as Polianthes 
geminiflora. It didn't bloom this year, so maybe it will be mature 
enough to bloom next year (unless it blooms in the next month or two). 
It seems to grow leaves very well here.
My P. x brundrantii did bloom, but had no scent (like P. tuberosa 
does). I have a couple of other hybrids I got from Yucca Do that 
haven't bloomed (yet?), and it has been quite hot lately (and humid as 
well the past few days).

--Lee Poulsen
Pasadena area, California, USDA Zone 9-10

More information about the pbs mailing list