Tue, 25 Oct 2011 09:58:12 PDT
Dear Mary Sue,

Let me give you what happens here for V. bracteata. I have some in large
containers that have burst dormancy a month ago and others that did not go
dormant at all and yet others that are just about to break. The ones that
did not go dormant received some water all summer. The others either got no
water or received very little. I have always assumed they enjoyed some
summer water and have not planted them out. However, I have seen massive
plantings in Santa Barbara on shaded slopes that were not watered in summer.
They did not mind the drought there at all. The soil was essentially clay,
which may make the difference for its retentive properties.

So, at least here, I think it's a matter of how much moisture they receive
in summer. 

V. capensis gets no water here in those months and is just about to break
out. We had some showers two weeks ago and another yesterday.

San Diego


-----Original Message-----
From: []
On Behalf Of Mary Sue Ittner

I'm really curious about Doug Westfall's recent post about the status of his

>There are flower spikes on most of them

My Veltheimia bracteata has just broken dormancy this month. Most of the
plants haven't had leaves since early summer. Are these new flower spikes?
My plants usually bloom sometime from March to May.

This is another example of how plants grow really differently in Southern
California than in Northern California.

Many years ago when we discussed Veltheimia some people reported their
plants never went dormant, probably because of the difference in how much
moisture they got in summer. When the leaves on mine start dying back, I
stop watering them. The ones I planted in the ground dwindled away I expect
because it was too dry for them in summer since in South Africa they would
have rainfall in summer. In large containers in the shade in our relatively
cool summers the soil probably doesn't dry out so much.

How do you treat yours Doug?

Mary Sue

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