Helonias bullata

Quick Characteristics:

Height: 10-30 cm (0.3-1 ft)
Flower Colors: pink
Flower Season: mid spring
Life form: evergreen rhizome

Helonias bullata L. or swamp pink is an east coast American species growing in bogs and swamps. Like many bog plants, it is under pressure by the loss of suitable biotopes due to human expansion. The fleshy rhizome can keep its optimal depth due to contractible fibrous roots in the soft underground. In spring, a compact inflorescence of pink flowers with blue anthers emerges from the evergreen basal rosette. The stem keeps growing on until seed dispersal and may then reach up to 60 cm. Helonias is highly self fertile to a point where it threatens genetic diversity in populations. The first two photos show a plant grown by Martin Bohnet in his bog garden. The third one by KenP has a more intense flower color. The seeds are ripe by the end of spring. Their rate of survival is said to decline rapidly in dry storage. They may be stored wet, cold and dark as light is needed for germination, but give best results if sown immediately either in wet sphagnum moss or floating in water, a main seed dispersal mechanism for the species.

Helonias bullata, Martin BohnetHelonias bullata, Martin BohnetHelonias bullata, KenPHelonias bullata freshly opened seed pods, Martin BohnetHelonias bullata 20 days after sowing into sphagnum, Martin Bohnet

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Page last modified on June 23, 2022, at 01:46 PM
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