Jane McGary janemcgary@earthlink.net
Fri, 21 Feb 2014 12:01:37 PST
Darren wrote,

>My first experience with Leontice sown in normal 10cm deep pots
>resulted in good germination but no tubers. After experimenting again
>with deep pots I came to the conclusion that the seedlings seek
>considerable depth before starting tuber formation and if the stem
>that grows downward to form the tuber encounters 'air pruning' at a
>drainage hole before they reach a depth they like then no tuber is
>formed. Even with 20cm deep pots standing on sand I found tubers
>formed partially extended from the drainage holes and I had to cut the
>pot to release them. My advice at this stage is that if you sowed the
>seed in a shorter pot you should stand it partially plunged in a
>bigger pot of sand or similar.

That's great advice. I do use 10 cm deep seed pots (the size known as 
4-inch in the USA, though they are closer to 3.5 inches square), so I 
will immediately plunge the Leontice seedling pots in gallon pots of 
sand. My smaller pots have 8 drainage holes, so the plants should be 
able to escape.

Some other kinds of bulbs do this too, particularly Calochortus and 
Erythronium, but they don't fail to make bulbs the first year as far 
as I have noticed.

Jane McGary
Portland, Oregon, USA

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