I see a lot of information on this site about heirloom vegetables and fruits but very little about heirloom ornamentals. Not only the vegetable garden plants that your Grandmother grew are inportant to pass to the next generation but also the flowers that she grew. Their are wonderful plants that are gone the way of the dinosaurs. Love to hear about the plants your ancestors grew in thier flower beds. Their are antique varieties of roses (known to the romans), peonies, tulips (did you know that tulip bulbs were a form of currency in the middle ages), and many, many others that we are being conditioned to forget because of the neon annuals at every nursery. Grandma had time to wait for biennials to bloom - we seldom do. Anyone interested in antique ornamentals out there? Here is a photo of one of the first amaryllis hybridized in the early 1800's and is hardy to zone 7 - called St. Joseph Lily.
lol, I just took the "test" over in roses, let's see how I do here. I have hollyhocks from my grandmother. From this farm, I have Valerian, several peonies including the fern leaved single, millions of daffs in several varieties, Johnny-jump-ups/heart's ease, Chinese lanterns, tansy, 3 mints, lupines, flowering spurge and phox. There are also Jack-in-pulpit, violets, native azaleas - one salmon, one pink, and old purple and brown iris.
I know - Brook asked me to do this months ago and I apologize for being so slow and waiting for someone else to start the thread.
Beautiful pic! And yes,heirlooms do not just mean veggies! I wish some of you Flower folk would drift over here and help us out.
The subject that I am most educated on is veggies,and I can talk for awhile on that and feel like I'm making a contribution,but we could really use some help with the ornamentals over here.
I'm interested in anything historical and would love some of you who are educated in the field to start some threads.I'm anxious to learn more,but don't know the right questions to ask.Please continue...
And there I was thinking I was alone in growing old flower forms and varities.
I have a few little grown plant varieties. Nothing from my grandparents, when they were gardening there were very few seed varieties available to the average gardener and many choice plants would have been lost if it hadn't been for the large house gardeners and the occasional barely touched gardens. I believe strongly in the need to conserve old varieties and breeds of plants (flower and veg) as well as animals, I feel they are an important gene pool which mustn't be lost.
The link is to the UK and Ireland's plant and garden conservation group. What are the conservation groups in your area?
i also have St Josephs amaryillis.
so far what ive been able to id EARLY PEARL daffs, VAN SION daffs, and parrot glads.
i dont have any heirloom plants other than bulbs, although i was given a packet of an heirloom celosia that i havent planted yet, more out of fear because i kill EVERYTHING i try from seed.
that is a gorgeous lily. where would i purchase something like this? i wish i was into gardening when my grama was alive. she and my grandfather were tobacco farmers in Deerfield, Massachusetts. she always had a huge vegetable garden but she always made time for flowers. i remember zinnias and sweet william. but i haven't been able to find the varieties i remember her having. something always seems "different" about the ones i see on seed packs and for sale.
Hey folks. I've ordered from a company called heirloom seed company. They have a variety of flowers as well as veggies. Also they have a monthly email newsletter that is quite good. They are very dedicated to quality heirloom seed offerings and the service was great. I got mostly veggies - and the germination rate has been superb. You can download their cataloge - and each variety has a short history with it. Check them out! www.heirloomseed.com
I live on the adjoining farm where I grew up. My brother lives in my childhood home and doesn't have the appreciation of the few things that grow there and have withstood the test of time.
The most amazing rose I have ever seen grows there. I have looked to find pictures of it, but haven't found it yet. I am going to move more of this rose bush to my farm here in a few days. I believe it may be a victorian rose? Kathleen or someone may want to jump in here. It's bloom looks like some of the very old pictures I see in books. Large pink blossoms. My brother even started mowing some of it down.
The other thing I rescued is a white lilac. My brother dug it up and threw it in the "hollow". I about fainted. It is now putting up new shoots here. But I think I need to replant in a sunnier location.
and there is the ever present bridal wreath spirea. One whiff of this and I am a little girl again.
KathyJo - I truly love those plants that remind you of your special moments from the past - the roses your grandmother grew or the bush she always had around her house. Try to rescue as many of those old plants from your mothers and one day someone will ask you where you found those wonderful flowers and then you will be able to remember again. There is a lot of interest in the old antique roses and you might be able to post a pic on the rose forum and someone might be able to identify it.
Believe it or not but I have been very lucky - I have found St. Joseph Lily on ebay and have bought large blooming size bulbs for just $5.00 each. If anyone is interested in where I have got these bulbs I will print the email for you - just leave a message.
Me, too Baa. That's why I was waiting to order some (looks like they need to be planted in the fall anyway), and hoping I'd find a less expensive source in the meantime.
I admire what OHG has done for heirloom bulbs, but the price of these glads makes me cringe. I also had my eye on Gladiolus 'Atom', a mid-20th century hybrid they've resurrected. I found a package of them locally at our Amish-run nursery, and now I'm anxious to see what they look like when they bloom. :)
Most interesting glads! Makes me wonder if a little thing I dug up in the woods is an heirloom. It's a glad, small bulbs, small fuschia blooms. I hope I can get photos next year and maybe someone can id it for me.
Aimee I grew up seeing just such a plant in all the country gardens of all the little old ladies in West Tennessee. I have tried to find just those old gladiola like plants and the closest I can come to them is the Byzantine mentioned previously in this thread. Love to see
They didn't bloom this year, I'm sure because I had neglected them after I potted them up to make room for the porch. All of this reminds me that I need to be sure to put some bulb food in that pot, and maybe I'll get blooms to show next year. I will check my photos from previous years, but I don't recall ever taking any of them.
I have an unusual pink flowering quince that my grandmother grew. My Dad took cuttings and now I have a small plant that came from cuttings of his plant!
I never knew my Grandmother but having 'her' shrub gives me a really good feeling - a connection I didn't feel before.
I also have more pass along plants/cuttings than I can count from my father. I can't say they are true 'Heirloom's' but they are very special to me.
I am very interested in heirloom flowers like my granny grew!!! In hindsight, I wish I'd have written down what she told me about her flowers. She's gone now but I'm on a mission to find what she loved. I do have the old-fashioned vining petunia and the "touch-me-nots" that she loved so much. I am not impressed by the latest new thing to come along. I'd rather have the tried and true.
I got some on ebay and lucked up on a neighbor that had some - didn't know what he had - and he let me divide his bed for some bulbs. There are some available for sale on the general market. Might be under the name amarylis johnsonii. Good luck
Actually -- I think I am going to cancel my order with plant delights.
The wholesaler who Waterpond Farms is using for the current Hellebores co-op also will be selling them in the spring. He is starting to get into retail sales and said he would give me a good deal . . . so I may just wait too.
I definitly have some heirlooms either here or at my mothers, lots of old daff, some unusual magnoilias several roses, some purchased some handed down,various old irises, some peonies, a few old daylilies, sedum,snowflakes, mints, lotus, ferns january jasmine, and grape hycinths.
have a great deal of interest but running out of room
I tried some new to me seed this year and have been very pleased with several. Abelmoschus manihot, the edible hibiscus and Ricinic communis, New Zealand purple, not sure of the age of this variety, but castor bean has been around a long time, both have been nice and the purple leaves of the castor bean are really stunning in the garden.
I admired this lily all over my neighborhood until I found some bulbs in my own backyard hidden behind some bannana trees. Here is a picture I took today. I have been trying to identify them. So far I think they look the most like the St. Joseph lily. Let me know what you think.
I love heirloom ornamentals. Dr. William Welch, formerly of Texas and now of Mississippi, and Greg Grant have written a wonderful book about Southern heirloom gardens. Fortunately, if you haven't inherited these, the book has a source list of likely nurseries.. My sister very much loves antique roses but she has a fair amount of sun, and I have very little. There is a marvelous place near Houston called The Antique Rose Emporium. It has other flowers too, but they are mostly sun-lovers. I have a lot of heirloom plants - some inherited, some passed along,and some (oh, gasp!) bought. The "big box" nurseries don't carry them, but there are nurseries that specialize.