Bulbs for South India

Narad narad@alltel.net
Thu, 25 Sep 2008 08:29:24 PDT
September 25, 2008

Dear PBS members,

As I prepare for my departure to India I am inspired to write all at  
PBS for your suggestions as to bulbs that will acclimatize in the hot  
tropics of southern India.  We make our own compost from leaves, cow  
manure, etc. so we have control of soil mixes and sufficient although  
not plentiful water, except during the monsoon, October to December,  
when we can have a few feet of rain in a day or two! Soil pH is  
neutral to slightly acid.

The red clay soil well amended with some sandy loam and ample compost  
has resulted in extensive reforestation creating a ‘Green Belt’ around  
the evolving township.  This has lowered temperatures about five  
degrees Fahrenheit so that now our winter low dips to 65 degrees.   
Some bulbs do quite well and I list these below for your information  
and as possible indicators for recommending other species.

I would be most grateful for your suggestions and if there are any  
spare bulbs available we can give a donation receipt for the value on  
request.  Currently I am in the process of arranging for a container  
load of landscape equipment such as mowers, aerator, nursery  
containers, etc. so I may not be able to reply to each of you until I  
get to India at the end of October, but that is one of the true  
benefits of the evolution in telecommunication technology.

I am still searching for a number of rain lilies which I list below  
and again, would be most grateful to receive a bulb or two (if they  
could be spared from valuable collections) for the rain lily  
hybridizing program we will begin in two months at the Matrimandir  

List of bulbous and rhizomatous plants currently growing in and around  
Auroville, Pondicherry and South India.  Primarily only a species and  
none of the finer hybrids.

Acidanthera bicolor
Alpinia sp.
Curcuma pallida
Dahlia (seasonal)
Drimiopsis kirkii
Eucharis grandiflora
Eurycles sylvestris
Gladiolus (seasonal)
Gloriosa superba
Haemanthus multiflorus
Hippeastrum – a pale orange form
Kaempferia pulchra
Kaempferia rotunda

List of Zephyranthes and related species I am currently seeking:

Habranthus concolor

Habranthus gracilifolius (H. extensis)

Habranthus howardii

Habranthus immaculatus

Habranthus juncifolius

Haylockia americana

Pyrolirion aureum

Pyrolirion flammeum

Zephyranthes grandiflora - fertile strain

Zephyranthes treatae

Zephyranthes chlorosolen - best strain

Zephyranthes smalii

Zephyranthes Laredo Yellow

Zephyranthes? Hjalmar Sandre

Zephyranthes refugiensis

Zephyranthes nymphaea

Zephyranthes subflava

Zephyranthes veracunda

Zephyranthes veracunda rosea

Zephyranthes latissamafolia

Zephyranthes fosteri

Zephyranthes crocifolia

Zephyranthes erubescens

Zephyranthes bella

Zephyranthes longifolia

Zephyranthes Starfrost

Zephyranthes Big Shot

Zephyranthes Libra

Zephyranthes Horsetail Falls

Zephyranthes Ellen Korsakoff

Zephyranthes albiella

Zephyranthes Teddy Buhler

Zephyranthes bifolia

Zephyranthes katherinae - darkest red and other shades

Any of Dr. Howard's hybrids and Padre Cicereo's hybrids

Thank you again for your advice and suggestions for the beautification  
of these very special gardens.

Richard M Eggenberger (Narad)
Matrimandir Gardens
‘Peace’ Auroville 605101

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