Ixia viridiflora

Bill Richardson ixia@dcsi.net.au
Tue, 26 Feb 2008 16:35:31 PST
Hi Mary-Sue, Juliet and friends,
once again Marie- Sue has given us a very definitive reply about I. 
viridflora and its growing habits, requirements, and not much more needs to 
be added.
I do remember posting my I. viridflora garden image, way back in the early 
'90's (last century at least!). At the time I recall I had dozens of 
viridflora corms and I was really very ambitious and willing to experiment.
I was designing a garden at the site of the Youth project where we had just 
built new premises and my idea was to create an African bulb garden, using 
the species I had available. The soil was average and we did add some blood 
and bone, built it up and dug it over before planting. Nothing else was done 
to the bed at all but the resulting blooms were just magnificent and they 
bloomed every year without any extra work being done.
I'm not sure if the bulbs are even still there as we passed the building and 
gardens on to another organisation when we finished up.
I do know that the large stand of Wachendorfia I had planted right along the 
front of the premises (which stopped traffic when their large flower spikes 
rose up into the sky with lovely yellow blooms) were pulled out the year we 
vacated, so probably everything else has gone too, who knows?, I haven't 
been back to check.
I. viridflora is not readily available here as it is usually not a good 
garden plant. Usually only opens on sunny days, looks scrappy as it dies 
down, doesn't flower for that long and is usually not long-lived in the 
ground. It is best grown in pots and needs a really dry dormant period. It 
is probably best grown by the specialist collector or plant nut who can 
research its needs and grow it properly. My original viridflora seed stock 
came from South Africa and I was pleased to get the darkest green (to kill 
for!) from the IBSA group in South Africa, years ago.
They flowered extremely well this year (in pots) but they never set seed. I 
keep them very dry in the dormant period. They need to be grown in a 
well-draining, sandy mix.
All of the Ixia that you can buy here in shops or from nurseries are mixed 
hybrids, which are very strong and good reliable garden plants, bred for our 
conditions. I have a lovely mix of white/purple/lilac Ixia in my front 
garden which flower later than any other here in December/January, well 
after every other Ixia is done and they seed profusely.
Juliet, I do hope you continue to grow Ixia, they are,
no doubt, my favourite plants.
For the past five years, I have been growing Lilium, it just shows how silly 
we can get as we grow older!
Bill Richardson
Victoria, Australia
Summer 12c to 32c at present

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mary Sue Ittner" <msittner@mcn.org>
To: <pbs@lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Tuesday, February 26, 2008 3:08 AM
Subject: [pbs] Ixia viridiflora

> Bill Richardson from our list (Victoria, Australia) who specializes in
> growing Ixia has reported great results with this species in the past and
> he grows them in the ground! He is actually the only one I've ever heard
> that can boast of this. Perhaps he will give us all an update about how to
> grow this bulb successfully.
> Mary Sue
> Mary Sue Ittner
> California's North Coast
> Wet mild winters with occasional frost
> Dry mild summers
> _______________________________________________
> pbs mailing list
> pbs@lists.ibiblio.org
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