Very basic lachenalia questions (Rick Buell)

Ernie DeMarie via pbs pbs@lists.ibiblio.org
Sat, 24 Oct 2015 17:07:35 PDT
Hi Rick,
Lachenalias are not fussy in a cool greenhouse or, as in my case, under lights in a cool garage with some sun.  I am using more t5 fixtures for my winter growers and they are the best since their light is strong, but if anything grows tall enough to touch the bulbs it will burn.   I saw something on a gesneriad forum about workshop LED lights being sold by Costco, they seem to be brighter than most flourescents but not as bright as the t5s.  Dont know enough about them personally but they would be great for reducing our electric bill.  L viridiflora is particularly easy, it can bloom second year from seed and it sets plenty of seeds.  For a plant that is quite rare and localized in nature it is not fussy, I grow it in perlite and miracle grow container mix, sometimes I add some turface or pumice if I can get it to the mix as well.  It needs to be well aerated but they dont want to go too dry when in active growth.  L viridiflora is among the first species to bloom, and it can
  be grown in small pots which in my circumstances I have to do, most smaller growers are in plastic pots about 3 and a half inches across and maybe 4 or 4 and a half inches deep.  
As for crowding, yes they can be crowded but will need to be separated the next season as bulbs propagate and/or grow fast.  I had a seedling pot of viridiflora I started last year and there were so many I ended up creating five or six more pots after they sprouted, they were making the pot bulge.  
I keep the lachenalia pots dry in the garage for the summer, it is not too hot in there and they dont need any water until it is time to grow again.  
Ernie
In Briarcliff Manor NY where we had a hard frost last weekend, but frost resistant stuff is still in bloom but that doesnt include much in the way of geophytes at the moment.  Crinum bulbispermum foliage still looks fine though.  



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