Calochortus roots

John Wickham via pbs
Tue, 13 Oct 2020 11:07:20 PDT
1. A few years ago, I tested potting Calochortus in 5 gallon pots, one with pure DG and the other with a fast-draining potting mix. The first year, they all grew well and bloomed. But the second year was most interesting: bulbs potted in pure DG produced leaves a full month earlier than those potted in potting mix. The pots were placed immediately next to each other and received water at the same time. 

2. I won't water Calochortus until temperatures cool. In October, I might start bringing the moisture content of the pots up. Since they've been dry for the summer months, the soil may not retain moisture. Its important not to rot them out, so temperature and water are an important combination to monitor.
John WickhamLos Angeles, CA
   On Tuesday, October 13, 2020, 10:42:28 AM PDT, Terry Laskiewicz via pbs <> wrote:  
  I repotted a variety of calochortus bulbs last week . Only one had root buds.They were in deep pots in sand ,grit and pumice when potted 2 years ago and kept in the glass house all year.  Only plummerae bloomed this summer. Many did not even leaf out.
    I thought maybe a little garden soil in the mix would help on this round? Or perhaps they did not get enough winter cold? Glass house kept above 40F?  Any thoughts?
  Also should I keep them moist now ?

Thanks for any help.
Terry Laskiewicz. Southern Washington. Z7

From: pbs <> on behalf of Kipp McMichael via pbs <>
Sent: Tuesday, October 13, 2020 8:43:31 AM
To: <>
Cc: Kipp McMichael <>
Subject: Re: [pbs] Calochortus roots


  I have heard air pressure (specifically the swings to low pressure that come with the return of rainstorms) could be the signal.

  I tend to repot no later than Oct 1 because the bulbs start to wake after that. I have found that the new roots will only grow very, very slowly until soil moisture arrives and I have found new root buds as early as July.

From: pbs <> on behalf of Jim Barton via pbs <>
Sent: Tuesday, October 13, 2020 7:42 AM
To: <>
Cc: Jim Barton <>
Subject: [pbs] Calochortus roots

Last Saturday I dug up a pot of Calochortus vestae to repot them for this coming growing season. I was surprised to see that the largest bulbs were beginning to put out roots. They had been outside all summer with no water since the rains stooped last March. I have wandered how do they know it's time to break dormancy. Do they have an internal clock, is it temperature changes, daylight length (how that would work I don't know as they have 3 inches of soil over them?). Sunset zone 14.
Jim Barton

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