Cyclamen in the midwest

Tony Avent
Mon, 30 Jul 2012 08:17:00 PDT

I always failed with C. coum until I dug up one of our last languishing plants about 3 years ago and added an insane amount of compost to our native soil (sandy loam) and replanted it with the tuber buried several inches.  Here is a photo of the clump this past 11 years old.…

Tony Avent
Plant Delights Nursery @
Juniper Level Botanic Garden
9241 Sauls Road
Raleigh, North Carolina  27603  USA
Minimum Winter Temps 0-5 F
Maximum Summer Temps 95-105F
USDA Hardiness Zone 7b
phone 919 772-4794
fax  919 772-4752
"I consider every plant hardy until I have killed it least three times" - Avent

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of aaron floden
Sent: Monday, July 30, 2012 11:05 AM
To: Pacific Bulb Society
Subject: Re: [pbs] Cyclamen in the midwest

 I fared well with C. purpurascens and hederifolium in Kansas. Both grew for more than 5 years. My original purpurascens from Ellen Hornig is now with me here in E TN. It must be over a decade old now. Our soils were different. In Kansas I had heavy clay vs. your Missouri loess. I always failed with coum. It would flower, but died shortly thereafter. Even caucasicum. Hederifolium persisted, but never seeded around.

 Here in E TN I can keep coum alive, but it only likes being planted on the surface. Adzharicum (=caucasicum?) seems to prefer being buried and grows better than typical coum. I have two typical coum that rest on the soil with a few roots holding them in place. They seem happy. Herederifolium is a weed, purpurascens is flowering now in force. Graecum does not last long. Persicum ex Golan Heights died. Elegans died. Pseudibericum perished over last winters mild conditions (why?!). Creticum flowers every year strangely enough. Libanoticum died. Confusum flowers, but has yet to set seed. Cilicium grows well enough, but is so small I don't find it worth the space.


--- On Mon, 7/30/12, Tony Avent <> wrote:

From: Tony Avent <>
Subject: Re: [pbs] Cyclamen in the midwest
To: "'Pacific Bulb Society'" <>
Date: Monday, July 30, 2012, 8:52 PM

 Different species like to be planted at different depths...C. hederifolium likes to be shallow with the tuber showing, while C. graecum and C. coum like to have the tuber covered se  veral inches deep.  Most cyclamen prefer light open shade with even an hour or two of sun, preferably in the morning.  We have found that good soil preparation with lots of compost makes a HUGE difference in the performance of cyclamen in the garden. If you just throw them into poorly prepared ground, your results will not be good. Cyclamen need to be dry in the summer during dormancy.  We found that this can be best accomplished by putting them near a large tree or shrub.  Cyclamen actually don't mind summer irrigation as long as the soil dries quickly.  I would encourage folks not to give up after a few failures.

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