My first autumn sown seedlings have sprung! G. equitans and G. gueinzii both have around 5 that have surfaced. They are white at the moment, as I had placed sheets of paper over them to stop them from drying out.
For the last week at least they have been under another box perhaps giving more darkness, bot not totally blocked from the light as they are sat in a long vegetable produce box with stacking corners.
I used a mix of gritty soil with some wood ash and more than 50% leaf compost. The pots used are normal 14cm or near diameter, depth standard around 12cm. The mixture was moist to start with, I gently flattened and firmed the tops and sowed 15 seeds (25 in some where I have more seeds) and kept 10 of each as an insurance. To cover them I sprinkled well broken leaf compost over just to cover. I then used a fine spray to completely wet the mixture once only.
Now that they are coming through, and the tops are still moist but some are starting to dry slightly, I have given them all a very light spray to let them know they have rain and can grow. Free draining and moist is the key. I have removed the paper but they are still under the other box for a little longer until I see more germinate. I will have to give them more light soon.
They were left on my kitchen floor at temps mostly around 16-18C (61-65F). I was going to leave them there to replicate mild autumn weather in Sth Africa, then if they hadn't germinated I was going to move them to a cold greenhouse in late winter to let them get colder nights. Sth African temperatures will generally be higher than ours, but some areas particularly in the mountains experience lows to -8C at night, with warmer days.
If they all germinate where they are I will leave them there until spring, then move them to the cold greenhouse. If some haven't germinated by late winter I will move those to the greenhouse to experience bigger fluctuations in temperatures.
It would be a good idea for me (when I get around to it) to check each location for each species I am growing, then see if I can find out what temperatures that area generally has. Most of them I think will be adaptable to my conditions anyway, so I don't want them to think they will get special treatment unless they prove to be temperamental!
I sowed them on the 23rd November, and I saw these on 15th December, so it took 3 weeks. I sowed Eucomis vandermerwei seeds at the same time and I have 2 of those through too!
There are 3 G. equitans in this pic, one towards the bottom with a seed head still attached. Two about 1/2" below the label still bent over but with that definite gladiolus seedling appearance.
Gee Deb, if your night temps are in the 50's and 70's what are your day temps like!
Our day temps are now going down to the low 40's max (5C tomorrow, 41F). Nights are just above freezing but a touch of frost can be expected. We do have some sun though, that helps enormously!
I spent yesterday afternoon scraping around for more suitable sized pots, you know how it is. You have to tip out anything that you can find a spot to plant in, find anything that may have died, then wash the pots. Then scrape around for old plant labels to recycle, they need to be washed, written on, and after all that I didn't get any seeds sown! I used up all the labels I bought, 250 of them!
But it is great fun, isn't it? I still have time, our inside temps won't change much.
I would imagine your temps would be similar to Sth Africa, they should do well in TX. We can compare notes!
days are 70's--sorry about that. We are supposed to get a cool down to nights 40's and days 50 or 60. We sometimes (this year anyway) have a lot of rain in the summer but usually very dry between Aug and end of Oct. Needless to say the high temp rarely goes below 90 during that time. High humidity too--usually year round.
Summer dormant bulbs that have to remain bone dry (and I got a lot of them) have to be grown in clay pots and either moved way up under the eave of the house (if they can take a little moisture every now and then) or into the garage. Half of the garage is made into a "quasi-storage room" and does get some AC--stays at about 85F during that time range.
After looking at this site--I realized I used to have some G. carneus in the ground about 15 years ago. They did really well on neglect too for 4 years (sometimes as low as 25F during that time period too according to my journal) until a supposedly "dwarf" piece of pampas grass next to them needed to be killed to make room for more Louisiana Iris'. That's a long story in itself...took me two full seasons to kill the beast and the remains of the "stump" still sit rotting right in the middle of the bed of iris. At least it is at ground level and I can cover it with mulch. Still leaves a meter round bare space in the bed.
Despite what Annie's Annuals says--mine did just fine through summer deluges. But the ground heats up and dries out within three days usually at 95F--lol. So they might do OK in the ground for you too on a south facing exposure by those bricks your house has. In fact, I'm going to order some more from SilverHill seeds. I managed to find 35 pkts of bulbs that I simply will perish if I don't have--I'll get the 100 lot size--you need anymore?
I know what you mean about the cleaning and arranging. Most all of my plants are in my backyard where nobody will realize the depths of my obsession. It faces North and I'm just moving pots constantly to chase the sun--at the height of the summer it's the opposite. Chase what little shade there is. By the time I finish all that it will be dark. But alas, Scarlet--tomorrow is another day!
zest not all of mine have germinated, only 2 species so far, but cooler may be best. Many autumn sown Sth African bulbs seem to germinate well at that temperature, Eucomis and Agapanthus I sow in autumn when fresh and leave in an east window in a spare bedroom with plastic covering to keep moist. Moist and free draining is always best, I never water until the top starts to look a little dry and then only give a fine spray with a pump action spray bottle. I didn't place plastic over the gladiolus pots, just paper but that can keep them from drying.
They may germinate at slightly warmer temperatures, but it's the spring sowing species that require perhaps around 20C. I sowed G dalenii in April in the greenhouse so they would have had some higher temps as well as lower, we can have some cold April weather.
Deb I have used wood ash because there is a huge pile I can use from burning off garden rubbish and grass sods (lifted to make a new bed) mixed with wood. It should have plenty of potash in it, and that is good for bulbs, but if I didn't have it they would have had to do without! I didn't have it for G dalenii. Some plants I repotted in a mix with wood ash in have greened up beautifully. There are fires in Sth Africa which will leave potash, so it sounds like a good idea! I prefer to use natural resources, and it's free!
Deb your weather is still like our normal summer temperatures, I imagine more watering would be necessary. If you can think of seeds that have matured over the summer, laid on the ground amongst debris and experienced drying spells, then autumn comes with rains and it's cooler, they think yep, time to grow, we have water. Whether they have constant water is something to think about, in nature unless they are sat in a crevice or protected spot that doesn't dry easily they will most likely suffer some dryness with wet spells in between. It's usually a combination of rain with the correct temperature that triggers germination, and once the seeding has it's root in place they can generally withstand quite a bit of variable weather, but remember that winds and dryness under the surface of the soil can help keep seedlings from geting too wet and rotting. This is why I think just moist is best as we can't hope to replicate nature, but by keeping them in a friable mixture the roots travel easily and won't rot.
G. carneus is unbelievably beautiful, I can't wait to see it flower! I think I have enough, thanks! That south wall you are talking about is full with G communis ssp byzantinus, after they die back the hardy fuchsias take over and fill it so no room there! I'm working on more places though! We have high humidity too but usually not the heat to go with it. It's surprising just how tough some plants can be though if in the correct soil and location.
Pray tell us Deb, what are these 35 bulbs you found that you would perish without? This could be dangerous where I'm concerned!
Some Freesia's (the other species), Lachenalia, Albuca, Aristea, Cyanella, Polyxena, Lapeirosa, Velthima, Geissorhiza. I'm waiting on her to tell me whether I have to pay the phyto or fill out and send in that USDA form. I figure I'll get myself these seeds and Doutt's Cape book as a gift to myself. =)
Janet, have you ever used 3%H2O2 solution for seeds and seedlings? I started using 1/2cup per gallon of water both as an overnight soak for the seeds and for watering seedlings and baby transplants. I routinely do it with everything now; seems I've faster germination and a better rate, and no fungal problems. I water rooting cuttings with this solution too.
Swoooooooonnn! It's a good job I didn't search all the bulbs, unless this is new on their list! I did lust after many of the Lachenalias too, found a really good Japanese web site with great pics, I managed to limit myself to L aloides var. quadricolor 'this' time! I also got Spiloxene capensis, Cyrtanthus obliquus and Veltheimia capensis.
That Lapeirousia is darned tempting... next year???
Glad to see you are treating yourself on your birthday!
It's Debbie's birthday today! Make the most of it!
Thank you Janet--as soon as I go to grocery store, I shall have a very nice day. You would like the weather here right now--its 66F, drizzle-misting, and foggy as the Highlands.
You know we really need a Cape bulbs forum.
I don't use H2O2 either, I seldom if ever soak seeds, I try to mimic nature as best I can. I was told over and over to soak Rhodophiala species seeds--I refused to do so and had 99% germination in 2 weeks. I do almost everything outdoors which gives good air circulation so no fungal problems here either. I do pull seedlings inside if they can't handle lows below say 35-40F at nights. That's a pain sometimes--and I don't have a greenhouse. I will use either real good seed germinating mix or really good growing mix--depending on the "expensiveness and/or rarity" of the seeds. I use 9cm x 9cm x 12cm (square quarts) for anything staying 2 years in same container or sometimes azalea pots if I only have a few of some seeds--regular grow mix for this--with fine granular organic fertilizer mixed in (acidic or not depending on species). 6cm x 6cm x 6cm square starters for anything I think I need to use the germinating mix for.
I really just looked at specific genus on their sites; ones which liked and thought I could make a go of here. Mostly ones that said zone 8. Or other members of genus' I already have and want to try more of. Plus I already had some I wanted, just would rather propagate from seeds rather than find bulbs--if it was possible to find bulbs. Other than Freesia leichtlinii and Veltheima capensis--the bulbs are rare and harder to find over here. Aristea africana can be found; but I figure that's a two year from seed species here--so why not go with seed and get a lot more plants. Go to here and look at the 2 pics of Lachenalia of Diane Chapman of Telos Rare Bulbs. That bulb has my name written all over it. =) I'm also getting L. mutabilis--Howard say L. aloides will do the best here, but I haven't looked elsewhere for the seeds yet. I know this is off topic. http://www.pacificbulbsociety.org/pbswiki/index.php/Lachenalia
I would love that weather just now Debbie, it should be good for Glad germination! At around 11am it was 35F here, not much more later and 'almost' sunny! By the time the sun is nearly down at 3.30pm the days are too short.
You are right, there are so many other Sth African bulbs that grow in the same climate as gladiolus it's difficult to ignore them! Lachenalia viridiflora 'was' on my list, but I already had plenty of extra glad species I 'need' first. I decided with much anguish I would have to try just the one Lachenalia this year, then... next year is another year!
Until we get plenty of gladiolus to grow and compare, show, swoon over, it will be slow progress but hopefully will be encouraging.
I think I have looked at all of those several times!
The top one looks like a bonsai almost! It does have a very sturdy stem. I wonder if the flowers naturally splay out at an angle or if they have gone towards the light. Notice how the flowers go upright, the same effect as laying a climbing rose stem diagonally to encourage more flowers.
The flower bracts are very long and sturdy too. You can see how it would be good to hybridise with!
That T. cominsii was pretty nice too--more floriforous than most in that genus.
I see the G. alatus, G. arculatus. and G miusculus are all dwarf species after researching them today. I think I'm going to stick with the dward species other than G carneus. I think they will take up much less real estate that way.
Any idea on the size of the G. watermeyri? I have just the that left to plant tomorrow.
You know, this is off-topic but I've had to resort to a numbering system for all my bulbs on the plant tags. This also makes it easier to recycle the plastic plant labels. Then I have a separate journal for all the bulbs. I hate to admit what number I am up to--it would show the true depths of my bulb addiction.
G. watermeyeri is dwarf, the description on Silverhill
"10-30cm, ribbed lvs, striking scented cream to grey fl with purple veins & green & orange markings Wi-Sp. Sow Au."
Deb you just made me realise that the ones which are dwarf are the ones they are offering in lots of 100 seeds. What does this mean? To me it suggests the dwarf species set seed much better and are thus much more abundant in nature.
Dwarf species will also stand up better, winds won't tip them over, if grown outside that is worth considering.
Talking about plant tags isn't really off-topic, they are part of the sowing and growing process. That is a really good idea, if you keep a journal! That is something I have thought I should do, but unless you start with that sort of organisation in mine it's difficult to start somewhere down the road from the start. As I grow more unusual and rarer bulbs it would be a sensible thing to do, more so as the passion snowballs! At the moment I can't get my head around it, but I do write dates on the labels (sometimes I forget).
So Deb, what number are you up to? When I realise I have used so many labels in such a short time (even if they are not all sown), and mostly only one label for each lot, I know I'm getting in deep. I can justify that by saying to myself there are people out there I have seen take it to much higher extremes, and I am following in their footsteps! That can only be a good thing?
I started a separate journal on bulbs early this fall and just estimated dates on some things prior to that. My daughter (18) said she got tired of watching me write notes in 2 composition books in front of the computer. She bought it for me at one of the malls. My problem is I have way to many square quart pots growing; many with the same thing growing in multiple pots. I use a black paint pen I got at the craft shop (Michael's: Zig Painty Twin brand for those viewing these posts) and you can't clean that off the labels. So when I have to "recycle" them, all I have to do is black out a number and there is still plenty of room on the label. (For the viewers--the best American source for plastic plant tags is Novosel Enterprises--they give a discount on orders over $25, ship really fast, and have the thickest and best quality 6" labels I've found anywhere--its in the Garden Watchdog).
And then I also have the problem of multiple bulbs/seeds of the same genus and species from multiple sources. For instance, Freesia laxa. I got a large amount of these bulbs this fall from one source in Oct (146A), I also have some in the ground I've had about 4-5 years (146B--and I just estimate the age and number of those in the entry), then there were 2 different European sources of seeds (146C, 146D), and an American source of seeds (146E). I also threw another batch in from SilverHill since I was already ordering way too much from them anyway. Then there is the F. laxa whites and the F. laxa blue. Sadly, I'm up to #274 already, and I haven't even started on whats in the ground unless I also have seeds going of it too. This got to be way too much for words on a label--I went to the numbering system to save my sanity.
I just like the dwarf varieties of species glads because they look like they will do better down here and not need additional space. I figured SilverHill just offers bulk prices on the more commercial species that they think commercial US growers will want. Many of them are already grown and sold as bulbs over here (i.e. Veltheima capensis and Freesia occidentalis). But you are probably right about them being more vigorous growers and reproducers.
I didn't go back to SilverHIll looking at those varieties (probably because I spent way to much time there on this seed order from them--they did reply quickly to me though. Not sure if it was the size of the order or that I am a fellow IBS member that got their attn or if they just happened to be near the computer. I'll send you a copy of one of their articles about seed collecting in Africa as soon as the Christmas rush is over at the post office. It came out of one of my IBS bulb reports and is kinda funny. Rachel is a good writer and tell's a story well.
That RarePlants site in the UK has some really good pics of some of those species and info too. I'm not real sure about their USDA growing zone 8 part though. Amazon has indicated they have shipped the Cape Bulbs book and it goes into great detail about the native habitats that the bulbs are found in so I'll see if that info matches up with their USDA zones. I was thinking USDA zone 9--but that could only be G. carneus.
Since I don't have a ton of Glad seeds I sowed the ones in the post above in round "azalea" pots--about 10-12 per pot. I used really good quality potting mix in the bottom, then the seeds, then a super thin layer of germinating mix on top of them. That way I could keep just the top moist without supersaturating the entire pot. Some, such as G. watermeyri and G.alatus grow naturally in rocky sandstone and sand mixes so they will eventually have to be changed over to that kind of mix to survive well here in our wet winters.
I also need to research winter rainfall amounts there and may have to move them up under the eaves of the house to reduce winter rainfall here. I already have to do that with some California species (Triteleia laxa) and the eastern Cape Crinum lugardiae and Herbertia pulchela and the single cape Ammoncharis coranica I have (I notice you have seed pics of that in the PlantFiles--let me know how well that one does for you--I'm testing it here too). I get the feeling we may get more rain in the winter than either side of the cape gets--lol.
I would love to have the book on Cape Bulbs, they charge a heck of a lot more here for it. We can always swap info if we are really stuck! The Gladiolus book doesn't give zones but does give regions the species grow in and the type of terrain they grow on. I imagine rainfall for a give region could be found on the internet.
Silverhill states zone 8 unless otherwise stated, but as we know other factors such as sun and rain etc. make a lot of difference. I probably rely too much on my miracle mix, everything seems to thrive in it so while it does I will stick with it, at least while they are young.
I think it took a week for Silverhill to reply to my first email, once you place an order they don't take too long to send the invoice, 2 weeks to get here from acklowledging the order and payment.
Rare Plants has a new list up, the www offers only list make me want to grow everything, I have never seen such a great line up!
My Ammocharis are on the kitchen table and growing well, only one failed to take off but has a green start of a root that doesn't want to grow. My kitchen seems perfect for growing autumn bulbs! I grew Amaryllis seed/bulbils the same way last year and they are in the greenhouse now, growing after a dormant period. Temps now are very near freezing even in the day time but they don't mind it. Not sure if Ammocharis would cope the same.
I can see the green leaves of the Gladiolus pushing through the first sheath type growth, G gueinzii are popping up all over, still only 5 of G equitans.
Fairly thick fog here, more like the grey stuff filtering through the atmosphere where you don't know where the sky begins but yesteday was fairly thick fog, other places probably much worse.
We've had temps at freezing for last 3 days in the day, today late morning it was 30F (-1C) I think, the thermometer looses it's colour. I know there was freezing fog on some plants, the weather man just told us -3 or -4C tonight which it must have been last night. I have an open rose, some rose buds, frozen autumn flowering camellias. Just dragged the Ensete maurelli into the garage, argh, it felt frozen but hopefully the inside is OK, it has a thick stem.
Everything in the greenhouse look fine, even dahlia imperialis young plants still green but the new shoots on the outside one are frozen.
Gladiolus calianthe in the greenhouse still have green leaves too! It's just too cold to sow seed or even prepare to do it, my pile of autumn sowing glad seeds are still sat waiting. No more germination on the ones sown yet.
Still in the kitchen, and a bit dull too. I might move the germinated ones once they get a little more size, then if no more are germinating they might need more cold, so will move them.
I didn't see the colour of G. gueinzii until I saw it on the pic, it's in a shaded spot, so I had to check it to see if they were OK. The colour doesn't show up as strong as it is, I need to get a pic in proper light.
You would be surprised what does germinate over winter, I have a Bomarea species from tradewindsfruit germinating in the greenhouse just now. One came up recently, now another is coming through. They were sown late in spring if I remember, probably late May to June, I put the date on one lot and forgot to do it on the rest I sowed at the same time. Now I have to find what it was I sowed then as I moved them!
The G eqitans looks a lot like other Glad species. I still need to try and get G meliusculus and the G watermeyeri sown today. Need to go to post office--am hoping that's a little slower today--lol
I've got one small Bomarea (under lights in unheated garage), I'm not sure if its going to big enough to bloom this year--and am looking at 2 others to get in March. I think those would do really well in the front of my house with a shady northern summer exposure.
Got a book in the mail today--Bulbs in Containers by Leeds--Cape Bulbs maybe will come tomorrow or next day--good reading for cold winter nights--lol
Speaking of cold winter nights--yet another hard frost here last night (that makes 5 so far this winter--last year only 1). That one snuck up on me last night--they were only predicting a low of 37--some things were still inside but I had put out others--and did not cover up Freesia laxa seedlings--will check on them soon. They will probably be OK--they are located where they receive early morning sunshine. This makes the third time some crinums have been frozen back after starting to re-grow. They must be soooo confused and wondering what is going on. Its sunny outside today and the high is supposed to get up into the mid-60'sF so I will be able to get some things done--including sowing those last 2 glad species.
And that's the am report from southeast Texas today.=)
We had a few minutes of sun from 1pm. it just melted in behind the clouds again. Next few days will be up to 50F, winds from the Atlantic bringing rain so if I have enough daylight (dark at 3.30pm), and it doesn't rain, I have my pots and labels ready to get sowing!
We weren't forecast frosts to -4C either, it was never supposed to be below 0 or 1C. Has Cape Bulbs arrived yet? These books are great for knowing where bulbs grow in Africa, but don't always help much when you want to sow the seeds. Good temptation material though!
I forgot to take a pic of G. gueinzii in our 10 mins of sunshine, but got one with the flash which does show the colour fairly well. The back one shows it best. I can see the little tips on most of them pushing through.
Here are some of those Cooperia's for you--they handle frost/freeze fine at this stage. They are also known as Zephyranthes drummondi. These were started in October--near the end. I'm testing the new camera--lol
Sun's a bit bright right now--I'll get you another shot as the sun goes down a bit. These are outside in deep quarts.
Cape Bulbs is here--it has quite a bit of seed germination info and cultivation info. More than I thought it would. There is another one out called Cape Bulbs by Douitt I want--but its now out of print and has to be bought used.
The first lots were 3 weeks, and yes about 5 for these to start. We have had it a little colder, temps mostly around 16C (61F) but it can rise a little more, when it was hanging around freezing last week the temp dropped to 14C overnight (57F). The radiators are on from late afternoon and it can rise to 18C. I'd say around the low 60'sF is right for these, which may imitate their natural winter. The slightly colder night temps followed by warmer may have been a trigger.
On top of the mix I have just used some well broken leaf compost, I think it allows the seeds to breathe and is light. The mix under them is over half leaf compost with gritty soil (like washed river soil, it's dug from the drain with a mix of leaves and breaks down in a few months.), plus some wood ash.
Adding that they are still in the kitchen, on the floor.
Elaborate on the "drain" is this sorta like a "scree" area?
I got a lot done today...got 2 new species of Zeph's in the mail and potted them up and a Calydorea species. These are all from Mexico--one of the Zeph's were a Howard find.
Got this pic for you yesterday late--much less washed out than the first one--still playing with new camera. In the pot on the lower left, you can see where these seedlings are already forming bulb "shealths?--for lack of a better word. The brown covering around the green at soil level. You should be the only one in the UK with a genuine Texas native Zephyranthes species. If it ever stops raining, which its doing as we speak, again...I'll get out there and scrounge around and see what kind of over abundance I've got to send in the spring. By the way--here is a hybrid of the same cross I sent you, so you never know what you might get from those seeds. http://www.plantdelights.com/Catalog/Current/Detail/05156.html
I guess I can stop looking at the glad pots everyday and wait until end of January. There was something in the Cape Bulbs book about letting those grow out 18 months before allowing to go dormant. Let me go find that again and post later.
The 'drain' is called otherwise here a dyke, beck, there perhaps a ditch. It is a dug out water drain at the road side to take excess water into the national waterways. We have an underground water shed or level which rises at night, where the drain is too high it won't fill with water if dry, but rain always brings the level up. The silts washed into the drain, mixed with fallen leaves, are fertile and very gritty. The front of the house has a drain for a good distance which is lined with Victorian engineering bricks, belonging to us but with rights to the National waterways, in other words it's our duty to keep them clean if on your property.
The Zeph looks great, I like surprises! How old are your Zeph seedlings?
The local forecast today was for 11C, it was wet and windy at midday and only 6C. I got the Clivia seeds from China and got them in pots anyway, only needed two pots and they have to be sown.
I was hoping for some 'dryish' weather, although not raining a lot it's not pleasant, those Glad seeds need to be sown.
They were sown Oct (early) this year. Its a balmy 16C (according to my conversion chart) here with pouring rain, as usual. I may need to start arc construction soon. All the seed pots are up under the eaves of the house where they only receive mist spray--but all the rain lilies are out in the pouring rain. I pulled some Freesia leichtlini up under the eaves to keep the Cypella herbertii and the Herbertia pulchella company. Those are the ones I most worried about in the never ending rain we've had. I'm supposing the Herbertia lahue can tolerate the rain since they are native to Texas. =)
I have noticed one very tiny leaf of Gladiolus alatus peeking through today! I won't take a pic of it just yet, but this is good for germination reference.
I'm sure I got some Herbertia lahue with my Chilean seeds, I have sown some of those, will do the rest in spring.
The weather here has been sunny in the morning, by afternoon it turns colder, dull and windy with some rain, so I'm still waiting for my next sowing opportunity. It did get to not so balmy 9C, with a 'feels like 5C' wind. I have a spring feeling though, or perhaps I feel greatful I'm not in a very cold zone!
There are 2 forms of Herbertia lahue--a Texas form and a South American form. The Texas form supposedly has larger flowers, though I've never grown both to compare. H pulchella doesn't like so much winter water--I need to move it out into the sun--since it actually is shining today. A rare thing these days in itself.
Janet, that is super! This step by step reporting on your progress is SO valuable to all of us considering trying. You're right up there with Tammy on being the Seed Queen! Guess you're the Seed Queen of England, LOL.
Mine seem to have come to a halt too, perhaps the rest need some colder temperatures. If nothing more happens by the end of the month they will go in the greenhouse for February, we 'usually' get more warmth in March.
I think I'd better do mine too, they might think it's rained. It was 13C today, the rain came in by midday so no seed sowing again, it was really like spring. Seeds start to wake up in mild spells in January, I have more Eucomis vandermerwei germinated 5 now. Still have the E. montana from JJA to put in, they should be sown in autumn but I didn't get them then. I sowed Rosa omeiensis pteracantha not long ago and have 2 up, got them a year ago.
I just went to spray the Glad seeds, and started making noises like a monkey. ooo ooo, ooo ooo OOO OOO
That was for another G carinatus, now have 6 (was 5), another one each of G recurvus and virescens, making 2 of each! It's starting to happen again, I sowed 3 more lots of seed 2 days ago but not glads! Gotta get moving.
It's 'consecutive', but I get the drift. We're not actually having a lot of rain, but it keeps drizzling.
Spelling is not my forte and I was too lazy to look it up--also too busy. You ever heard of Eleutherine latiflolia? I'm having a hard time researching this particular species. I know the info in Howard. I large amount of seeds "fell" into my hands today. I found the other Eleutherine species on the web bt not much info out there on this one. You have a good south America/Mexican bulb species book?
Here is what I do know other than what's in Howard:
Found in San Louis Potosi, Mexico. Small flowers from June until Fall - will treat you to afternoon blooms of creamy white with yellowish mid-ribs. Leaves are robust and plicate. Rare in cultivation.
I got one of those jstor link which forbids you, and they never keep a link, so I copied the summary at the bottom. I can read some of the snall print on the paper too so will see if i can reproduce someof it.
"The New World genus Eleutherine (Iridaceae, tribe Tigridieae) is treated as comprising two species that are characterized by a bulbous rootstock, a large subapical cauline leaf, and small, white, stellate, evening-blooming flowers. The more common E. bulbosa (syn. E. plicata) extends across South America from Bolivia and southeastern Brazil to the West Indies and is widely cultivated for its medicinal properties. Less well known is E. latifolia (here including E. citriodora), with centers in northern Central America and subtropical South America. Both species have a basic chromosome number of x = 6 (2n = 12) and a similar bimodal karyotype, which is distinctive in Tigridieae; all other genera of the tribe have x = 7. The common form of E. bulbosa has a heteromorphic long chromosome pair, the result of a pericentric inversion in one of the long chromosomes, and it is sexually sterile, unlike E. latifolia, which is self-compatible and autogamous. The systematics and nomenclature of the two species are dealt with in detail, and the medicinal properties of E. bulbosa are outlined."
Eleutherine Herbert (1843), a member of th enew world tribe Tigridieae of iridaceae, comprises low-growing bulbousplants wiht pleated lanceolate leaves and small, evening-blooming flowers...Currently Havenna (?) (1984a) admits to two more species, E latifloia, (Stanley & I O Williams) Ravenna of norhtern Central America and subtropical Sth America, and E citriodora (Ravenna) Ravenna, from Nthn Argentina. We recognise only E latifolia and suggest that E citriodora is conspecific with E. latifolia. Two more species have been described from Indochina (Gagnepain (?) 1934), both conspecific wiht E bulbosa. They are sometimes erroneously thought to be native there and are still occasionally recognised (Schultes 1990). The two species of Eleatheria are alike in their nearly identical, small, white, stellase flowers with free, ascending stamens and relatively long, filiform style arms (?) that extend between the anthers. Vegetatively they share two unusual features, both synapomorphies a large foliage leaf inserted at the apex of the vegetative part of the stems; and dark red, rather than brown, bulb scales. ...E. accords well with Tigridiae in having a true bulb and plicate foliage leaves...(Goldblatt 1990). The common cultivated strain of E bulbosa is sexually sterile for reasons...it comprises par tof the pharmacopesa of several America Indian tribes and may be a clone that has been dispersed by humans from a source in the Eastern Andean foothills of Peru, where the most fertile of the few capsulate specimens occur.
I'm sending this, not a lot more, don't want to lose it.
Neal I think many families have been altered in the last few years, a search didn't bring that name up but that was a scientific paper, probably an old one. A search with iridaceae in the title got results.
It's in the Wikipedia, look at subfamilies on the right.
I don't think you can always enlarge the first page either on jstor, I was reading and typing at the same time from letters about 1/16" tall! I did type 'aceae' on the end of Tigridi... second time, I just edited it. That was at nearly 2am! Not quite Spanish but could have been.
I have ONE tiny seedling of G. meliusculus peeking though today (the first), plus one more of G. recurvus. for the records now THREE.
It was up to 20C (68F) in the kitchen last night, with the little water spray I gave them they responded. It seems between 16-20C is a suitable temp. for them.
I also managed to put in 8 lots of seeds today, (uh oh, not glads yet) it didn't rain!
One of G. carneus appeared yesterday, the first. I thought I saw it then couldn't find it again in the dim light!
I need help. I went to silverhill seeds and they have MORE Gladiolus species! I have made my list of those I haven't yet got, including some I eliminated before, but each time I look I decided to include some of those!
I usually have an 'oh no I've done it again' feeling after I order, but can't wait to see the results! The real thing is always much better than any pics.
I don't sterilise, just take the materials I have and mix them, nature doesn't sterilise. I think leaves composted have a sort of sterilising effect, wood is supposed to be antiseptic so I think leaves will be too. I do get the occasional worm in the mix, but that's no problem!
Take a look at Eucomis schijffii on silverhillseeds (not glads I know) I have never seen that one, it is amazing! You will have to do a name search for eucomis. Disa atricapilla is a terrestial orchid hardy to Z8, take a look at it, I hope they grow!
I've started blending my own potting mix for outdoor containers, and plan to eventually follow your lead in formulating my own for everything. When germinating seed outdoors I have no problems, but in the house I have to sterilize everything. Do you do most of your seed starting in the greenhouse?
It depends on what the seeds are, if they need sowing in the autumn at a temp of 16 to 20C such as eucomis I put them in an east window in the spare bedroom, or on the floor wherever there is space (glads).
For those which need late autumn sowing such as some lilies which need colder temps, I sowed in mid November and put them in the garage. I sowed some other seeds in mid December which need winter stratification and placed them on the floor of my neighbours greenhouse, it gets very little sun in the winter but gets light so the compsot stays moist. I have some of those germinating now with the mild spell.
Seeds which need 20C or more I usually sow them in the propogator if they need to be sown early, that is at least up until May, it's inside below a south window. Seeds which are better sown for late spring and early summer go in the greenhouse at that time. Some others I sow in the greenhoue in March if the weather is as it should be, mostly those which would require a temp of 10 to 18C and colder nights.
If you can make your own compost with your own resources it's very cheap...free! I used to mix Moss peat at 1/3 mix which cost me a lot of money with the amount of compost I go through, at the moment I am using the wood ash mix instead which also has soil and burnt grass sods etc in it. Mixing is always work but a needs to be done job. Moss peat gives a great texture and has some food in it added, but other than that it has no goodness.
Wallaby, you had better set up some sort of assembly line on your kitchen counter to get those glads sown where you can keep warm while you do it. The only 3 Glads I wish I had started this year are G variegatus, G virgatus, and G. watsonius. The pics of those are so pretty in Cape Bulbs. They got a real pretty pic of your G venustus and a side view shot of G undulatus which is gorgeous. I guess next year will be OK.
I had to bring everything inside due to a possible ice storm. Rain lilies cover the entire floor of the garage--cold they can handle but ice, I don't know about that. I also have a large order of those to pack off so at least I will remain dry while packing them. The entire floor of the office is covered with ungerminated pots of different bulb stuff and my beloved oxalis collection. And the breakfast nook (which at this moment I'm thankful had no furniture in it--we have a dining area in the great room, a bar, and a breakfast nook in the kitchen--now how many places are really needed for eating anyway?) is covered with pots of tender bulbs. The rest of the stuff is on its own out there--it should be OK. Now that we spent the afternoon hauling pots; watch it not ice up (which it rarely does down here) or get below 30F. Then I will get the joy of hauling it all back outside in the dark on Thursday night. Are we having fun yet? =)
Oh I am sowing them inside but I find it more comfortable on the floor. I moved the first lot up to the bedroom on the floor under the window, the pots I prepared are in their place ready to sow, perhaps tomorrow.
I know you enjoy lugging all those pots in and out Deb, you can get close to them to see how they are doing!
I 'did' order 100 of G undulatus, and G. marlothii (rarely seen) as it cost very little more, could have got 100 of G venustus but decided not to. I was surprised they had the 100 cheaper offer of G marlothii if they are rarely seen.
Was that SilverHill? I think they might put the bigger pkg's out of what they have in their test gardens or else what they had a lot of luck finding. Must be a good performer and grower then.
I also got quite close and personal with several tree frogs which startled me nearly to death when they started walking on the back of my hand right while I was holding a huge tray of quart pots. I nearly dropped them in the living room floor. It was shorter and easier to cut thru the house with the pots to the garage (its attached to the house) because the side of the house is a muddy quagmire. I hope no one had their web cam on--would have made a very funny you tube video. I need to get that crushed gravel path finished next summer!
Yes silverhill, they do collect wild seeds, with conservation in mind, I don't know if they grow them but they might do. If they are rarely seen perhaps they set seed heavily only every few years, if they have a lot of seeds they still have to sell them. It could be the pollinators are not always around in great numbers, I will have a look in my book, see what it says.
Frogs and toads like pots, it reminds me of a pot I picked up in the greenhouse wondering where that large stone had come from. As I stared it dawned on me I was looking at a huge toad which had buried itself in the soil, I screamed, it shrunk, so I put the pot back and left it. I often have toads or frogs in the greenhouses, they eat bugs.
Tree frogs are very cute but startling when crawling on you when you are not expecting them! =0)
Silverhill does have a large test garden--I don't know if I saw the picture on their website or one of the numerous articles they have written for the IBS Bulb report. Unfortunately, the pic was not a close up so it looks like a large "quilt" of different colors.
I took my first lot upstairs, I think I have a few more germinated but they have slowed down for now. I still have the pots inside for the next lot, not sown, but as things are slow it might not be a bad idea to have left them.
I'll have to take a note of what I do have. A box fell on G equitans before I moved them and bent a couple of the green leaf parts, today I noticed those two were drooping but perhaps got too dry, I can't keep an eye on them as easily and the air is probably drier. I wonder if I should put them in the greenhouse. I noticed 2 thick new shoots of G dalenii coming up in the greenhouse, the yellow and orange one that had one flower stem last year, they perhaps will flower this year, they are not next to the stem of the flowered one.
I'm aiming to sow the next lot by the end of the month (which is close), the light levels will be better. I did get another 6 pots of compost in today to sow more lily seeds, now I need to mix more compost!
The next order should be on it's way now, the only seeds they didn't have was Eucomis schijffii, shame about that.
I had a count, I think I have gained one and lost it with G carneus, perhaps lost one with G gueinzii, the light isn't good though. Some others have germinated where there were none, only 3 now with none out of the 11.
I've gotten a few things started today and will do more tonight on the kitchen counter as I do laundry. Let me tell you, that potting medium sitting outside of my back door was so cold, I could not believe it. I have arthritis in hands and I just brought that soil in, quickly mixed it with equally cold sand, and poured hot water into the container I was mixing it in just to get it to a bearable temp to handle.
But did get 3 Cyanella species, a couple of Aristea species, and an Arthropodium stricta from Australia done. This was after I hauled all of the rain lilies and their numerous friends out of the garage. The Freesia leichtlinii actually must have enjoyed its week in the garage--it's grown 5 more inches--lol
I'm leaving the glads in all the windowsills until I see germination. I suspect they will stay about 60-65F there. And by the time they decide to germinate, they should be well ready for the great out of doors.
I'm debating on whether to start all these Lachenalia and Polyxena species now or in the fall. I guess it will be more Freesia and Lapeirousa species for tonight.
edited to add--can you bottom water those seedlings or is the medium not conducive for that?
re the watering, I would rather just spray on top, many of these bulbs grow in very free draining sandstone soils or amongst rocks where they have to search for moisture. Even though they are winter growing, the areas they grow in will most likely drain fairly quickly even though the air might be laden with moisture. Some will grow in moisture pockets, but the surrounding areas probably dry too much.
I think to soak from the bottom might wet the compost too much even though it's free draining, and the roots will be tiny now. In the open ground in their natural area they would be subject to other drying factors too, such as wind and sun.
Lachenalias are autumn sowing (aloides is anyway), although I haven't sown mine yet I will sow them by late winter, it will probably be more like the autumn in Sth Africa, or colder. I may even depend on light hours too, perhaps you would be better to sow now while they are fresh. The season would be more in line with their clocks too if that makes a difference, autumn there is our spring. Temperature and moisture are possibly the deciding factors for germination, as autumn comes and cools they can grow, your climate is different to mine so I can't say really.
I guess they "know" the seasons are reversed here. Its kind of confusing to me. So do the glads "think" it is early autumn (autumn to us, weather-wise)? Are you reversing them, or are they "expecting" over 13 hours of light? LOL, that makes no sense! You can tell I'm confused.
And Janet, you are one smart cookie! The way you water them and mimic nature so well is very good thinking :)
The rainfall average of 464mm is similar to ours, it's 21" per annum here but lately has been a lot less I'm sure. What is surprising is many locations there have winter temps very little less than the summer temps. Summer temps are not much higher on average than ours, we do get higher temps at times but the average for hottest months is only 21C here. Average winter temps is 6C, so their winter temps are similar to our summer temps. I know some places in the mountains can get down to -8C.
We are now getting daylight until close on 5pm, I can't say when it gets light!
Neal, when bulbs come from South Africa to the northern hemisphere they have to adjust and may not flower for a season or two, so I think seed could be the same. They may respond to our spring as if it's autumn if the daylight hours and temps are suitable. The 13.5 hours of light is now in Johannesburgh and it's summer, that should be less for the more southerly Cape region where many of these grow, and less still for autumn.
For spring sowing varieties I prefer to leave it until at least mid April, as it can be cold until then and in a greenhouse it may give the right conditions. I sowed G dalenii then and got good germination, but the seeds came from Vancouver. They will need the summer to grow sufficiently and that seems to be a good time for here.
My G dalenii which had one flower spike on last year has two new shoots coming up, nice colour. I assume they are ones which have matured and will flower this year, see the date of sowing, the first one flowered in not much over a year.
There are still some thin leaves from last year's smaller ones, unless of course they grew as offsets from the flowering one, they were well spread but I think I had at least 8 growing in the first place. They are strange really, they disappeared and must have been doing their thing underground, I thought they weren't going to grow again when such tiny things died back, I don't really remember them doing that either, they sort of just went.
It looks like a new growth as well at the side of last year's flowering stem which is still green, I was too busy looking at the pretty purple ones.
I found this RHS page with lectures from various people on the Cape growing conditions, weather, bulbs etc. I thought it might be useful, the first lecture gives climatic conditions in different areas and links.
Finally have a couple germinated in each pot of G arculatus and G carneus. Also got G dalenii and G communis ssp byzantinus from NARGS today.
I must be the only member who wanted all these bulb seeds because I got everything I asked for on my first string of picks. I can't believe no one wanted Rhodophiala mendocina. I got 3 Trigridia's, 1 Geissorhiza, Freesia laxa 'Joan Evans' (3 pks), 2 Cypella's, 3 Lachnalia, Veltheima bracteata, 3 Zeph's, 3 Habranthes, 2 Polianthes, a Polyxena species, Freesia grandiflora and 6 scutellaria species. I'd say that was well worth $12.50--esp if I get more of what I want on the second string of picks.
This pic of the Glads came out awfully red with the flash in the windowsill, but I don't think its worth trying to jack with to make it look better.
You have at least 12 good ones there! That's more than a couple, what are they? I can only see all those in the middle pot. They look like they've been growing for some time. I noticed some more of mine spring up tonight, but it's still dull and quite cold, warming a little again next week.
You did get more than your money's worth in the seeds, now off to sow them!
I haven't got my next lot yet, best get 2nd lot sown before they come.
With Silverhill too I will be busy for hours upon hours--those were a week old. They shot up tall but haven't started "filling out" any. I put about 12-14 seeds in each pot. Figure I'll just let them sit there until at least next year--bulbs love company. I mixed some rain water (something we have plenty of) with some 8-8-8 really diluted fert. Thank goodness for youtube music vids to listen to while potting things up.
I wish I could move some of this stuff outside but just not warm enough at night yet. Daylength getting longer so I guess the window's better than nothing. The middle pot is the only one germinated on that sill yet. I'd have to look up what the other 2 pots are but I know they are not glads. Probably some Freesia species. Those are soooo slow in germinating--makes me want to scream.
It'll start warming up here good at first of March...then March, April, and May real good growing conditions before it starts getting really hot. End of September thru Christmas usually good growing months (just the shortening days a problem). I shall soon be very busy. Starting to get good germination on the glads, Freesia's too (finally) and even the Freesia seeds left outside thru all the freezes (held my breath on them--still waiting on the Cypella coelestis seeds but had some Cyanella orchidiformis from SilverHill pop up in a week). Go figure. The joys and wonders of bulbs from seed.
This shot has a number of things in it--the ones at the far right are those Calydorea's (I'm now thinking those are 6-12 month old seedlings from Mexico not year old), the four squares in the middle are a Pasithea--30 days old. The big round ones around the sides are Glads carneus 2 pots and Glad watermeyri. I need to go check on the other 2 species.
G. carneus I think is one doing well, one of the first ones seems to be dying back but some of them look stronger. Another is racing away. If the weaker ones don't do well now I have a few seeds left so can try them earlier next autumn. My light levels in the bedroom are not good at this time of year!
Got some pics, it's late but will load them now and see if I can post some.
I don't have any of those yet. I had a pecked off Iris reticulata Pauline flower, that is related to glads. Too darned cold to look around at anything today, -7C in the greenhouse last night, but we had sunshine today! I even put some compost in pots and sowed some seeds.
It was already down to below 30F before dark. Froze off the leaves on my strelitzias, I brought two inside, stems seem OK, some may be mush. Weather men can no longer give accurate forecasts!
Was it G alatus Monica? I think they have been a little later than some, and the winter may have slowed them up. It is getting warmer here again, so it will be time to get more seeds in. The autumns in Sth Africa are cooler but not as cold as our winters. Some areas have summer temps not so much different.
Even though some are autumn sowing, I do think they may have a body clock in line with the Southern Hemisphere. My aim now is to sow the rest of the autumn ones by the end of this month, then the spring sowing ones later in spring, perhaps mid April.
I just bought some more plant labels on ebay, I will also need to empty more pots to sow the seeds in, plenty to do! I find it's a good way to get other jobs done when the pots are needed, either pot things on or plant them out.
Janet--when you think about it email me about those plant labels--I know I can get you a really good deal and the shipping to you from this end to you is (excuse the pun) dirt cheap. I can add whatever you want on to one of my orders.
garden-wonder is the seller's name but he has sold out of those now, and only stated the UK for posting to. They were £0.79 for 100 + £0.95 first lot, £0.60 for next lots. He still has some 6" labels for £1.25.
There is another seller advertising (with the same picture) above my purchase selling 1,000 for £7.30 + £5.20, again only in the UK, you could try emailing them if you want that many! It's southern-supply-solutions. They are the ones with a hole at the tip for hanging, and a round top, rigid .
Some are tiny and as you say spindly. Some of these bulbs can grow for a very short time then die back, but something must be happening underneath the surface. You think they have gone for good and the next year come back strong, so patience is needed and surprises may be in store!
Mine are still much the same, some have died back so I will just have to be patient! I had thought the weather was improving but it's gone downhill, as usual. No hurry yet.
I must admit, I'm less fond of these than most of the other bulb species I've started from seed--but they may come on a bit stronger with a few more fertilizations and some warmer weather. And less wind perhaps...I need to take you some pics--some of the Freesia's are big enough to bloom at any time--I was out taking pics of some narcissus my mom gave me right before she died 13 yrs ago that are blooming now, and the camera ran out of batteries. I'll pic some batteries up tomorrow on my way home from work; I've been needing to take you some pics. Been rather busy trading with some other pro growers for some bulbs. By the way, I just got 2 Ammorcharis nerinoides today. Here's a real pretty Californis native Triteleia laxa "Butte County Strain" just to look at...
Yes, the Freesia laxa seeds--most importantly, the blue. I shall post you a pic tomorrow--no batteries...you shall be amazed. Yes, the Ammocharis are blooming size. We have perfect Cape weather right now--high's 75 low 50'sF. Optimum growing conditions.
I really like those Triteleia's too. A very good early bloomer here. These scapes are about 40cm tall. Same variety--but different bulb.
I'm trying to decide how big a pot to put those A nerinoides in. I hear they like it even drier than the A coranica's do. I tend to go too big on pot size for my pot grown plants. Someone, somewhere on the web had a A coranica just blooming its head off in a pot so small it made me cringe--lol. I know a lot of the North Carolina growers remove and dry store theirs and they bloom like crazy still.
As much as this will cause me great mental stress--lol--I think I'm going to put the smaller of the A nerinoides in the ground and see how it does. I'll still have one in a pot for offsetting (at least I hope it will =))
Thanks Dale, I see they signed up a coupleof days ago, perhaps instead of going into lengthy details I could post a link to my Cottage Garden thread.
Deb I think you should go with the smaller pot, as the bulbs are mature and if they are anything like A coranica they are huge. Being a good food storage organ, and they do grow in very dry areas so I'm thinking a pot too large will hold too much water which it may not be able to use.
A nerinoides looks similar, or 'nerine-like'. I hope they flower for you, then you can show us the pics!
Look at what Dash has to say, he says a big pot, but that may be better to follow a small pot, perhaps he means deep as he says later for the roots. He also says they take up to 2 years to establish their roots and resent disturbance, this could be the reason for a small pot to start with. Like Hippestrum, if you wet the bulb too much before it can root they will rot. The roots should go deep to seek water, leaving the bulb sat dry.
I've been meaning to give you an update on the glad seedlings--I finally have a little time tonight (?!?). I'm debating on giving them some sun--its up to 78-80F in the day now--not sure how they will react to full sun; I might give them a few hours this weekend when I can monitor them better.
edited to add: I also gave them their first foliar feed and PHYSAN-20 fungicide (also foliar) three days ago. Not sure how they are going to react to that. The fert won't hurt them--but they might be a bit young for the PHYSAN yet. I just have so many bulbs I have to do something along that line and I was giving everything else their first fungicide--so ALL of the seedlings got it too. It is approved for organic in Texas (one of the few fungicides that is--commercial). Nothing "keeled" over dead after it so all is good, I guess.
They look quite good, if you saw the tiny things I had when G. dalenii germinated and disappeared in a blink you would be pleased with those! They are coming up well this year, 2 years in April, so don't despair.
I haven't had a close look at mine lately, they are in the greenhouse and I just throw them sow water when they look dry and they are on the floor! G gueinzii I notice because they are tall and still green. It was getting up to 25C but cold at night, I don't think the sun bothered them, but they are out of winds.
I wish it would get warmer again, I was getting on well with seed sowing!
Yes, I'm pleased with the fact that they are resisting dormancy. They longer I can keep them going, the stronger they will be when they emerge from dormancy. I am watering with only rain water (luckily, we've had a lot of that?!?). They are in the shade but full brunt of the wind. They are just awfully "wispy" compared to most bulb seedlings which gives me cause for worry in itself.
I'm too lazy to say it all again! I have only G ueinzii, 5 carneus and the largest one of equitans just holding on. They were sown earlier than yours I think, but in conditions not really the best. I'll sow the remaining seeds of these in early September and hope both lots grow!
I'll have to take a pic of my Ixia viridiflora, they grew really well over winter and were even tinier than these glads for a start, lasting a very short time but they grew!
G. gueinzii is droopy but has sheaths at the base.
How much sooner than me do you think you started yours? Yeah, I would be less nervous if they were a bit taller like yours. These are start dates, I'm sure germ time was similar.
OK--this is a Cyanella orchidiformis sown 1/20 as a sort of comparison pic. Notice how much wider the monocot cotyledon is than the glads are? I would just feel so much better if the glads had a wider cotyledon leaf like this--I think you know that's your standard 6" really stiff plastic plant tag for comparison. I know they are different species and will react/grow different. I guess I just feel like this wider leaf would be able to do a better job at photosynthesis to form a bulb. Maybe I'm just being silly here, but I think you know what I mean?