old homestead bulbs

Jane McGary janemcgary@earthlink.net
Sat, 06 Feb 2010 17:08:08 PST
Kathleen's note about long-term survival of garden bulbs is 
interesting. She wondered whether anything besides Galanthus, 
Narcissus, and Hyacinthoides would survive this way.

All of these are plants that are toxic and are not eaten by animals, 
so they do last much longer than the palatable ones such as Crocus 
and tulips. Hyacinthoides campanulata (Spanish bluebell) is a pest in 
the Pacific Northwest, in fact.

Another genus that will naturalize here is Muscari. Some Alliums are 
likely to be able to naturalize too, such as A. carinatum (A. 
pulchellum) and A. neapolitanum. Nectaroscordum siculum can be a 
menace if allowed to seed.

Colchicum is another browser-proof bulb, and large colonies of it can 
be seen around many old homesites in the Northwest. I think most of 
them are the old Dutch hybrids.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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