Chinese edible bulbs

Leo A. Martin
Fri, 10 Oct 2008 12:58:15 PDT
Iain wrote about lily culture in Phoenix. Thanks, I'll try the
suggestions. The edible one never bloomed so I don't know what the flower
looks like, nor the species. It's OK to use degrees C even in the USA.

Leo Martin
Phoenix Arizona USA

> Leo your note is interesting and I have a suggestion which might
> alleviate the lack of 'happiness' which hopefully might improve outcomes.
> By now the lilies should be going into rest mode, tip them out of their
> pot and see what is in their. Assuming no nasty creepy crawlies look to
> see it there are any underground bulbs on a part of the under ground
> stem, also see if there are any bulbils between the nose of the bulbs on
> the underground portion of the stem before it breaks through the surface
> of the soil. If you find either pot them up separately and renew potting
> mix for the original two bulbs. Put them into a pot which is smaller than
> another which you could try to get, put the bulb pot into the larger pot
> and insulate all around between the two pots using peat or anything else
> which would not rot down e.g vermiculite or polystyrene chips. This will
> insulate or buffer the bulb's roots from excessive heat and can be wetted
> during very not weather.
> Most lily species need a dormant phase, if this doesn't happen naturally
> for other plants in your area then the lilies will be stressing. In that
> case put each bulb in a wrapper of sorts and place it in a fridge for 2-3
> months at around 0 C to 5 C [sorry I can't help with F temps] In due
> course when what passes for your winter type period nears its end, put
> the bulbs back into pots as above and see what happens. It is important,
> certainly with Old World species e.g. Chinese, not to damage all roots
> especially those that they start producing, the new contractile roots
> from autumn [fall] onwards and these should not be damaged if at all
> possible. When in the fridge make sure the container can breathe, a
> plastic bag with holes punched in it may be one way and include moist
> peat or moist vermiculite beads in with them, they MUST NOT dry out.
> You didn't say what the flower colour or type was, anyway best of luck,
> I'd be interested to know how you get on next year. Remember to feed them
> ideally with a liquid feed during the first part of the year but stop
> that once the flowers drop off or the bulbs will get very flabby, just
> like us humans when we eat too much, {not me of course - I wish}
> Regards, Iain

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