Another old literary garden book, more rambunctiously opinionated than Lawrence's - tending to the outrageous where Lawrence is graceful - is E. A. Bowles' book, My Garden in Autumn and Winter. His chapter on autumn crocuses gives the reader some rather unusual insights into these plants.
The dianthus genus is my favorite, and I would love for Todd to do a series of articles on it - it's huge, with 100s of species that favor meadows or borders like D. caryophyllus (carnation) or one we see competing with wild grasses and golden rod in local meadows; some are wonderful low-growers that can be too big for the trough like D. plumarius (does well in our clay soil where there are stones for it to fall over); and then some for the third class where tiny dainties thrive. I see a series of articles in your future, Todd.
And then there are the fragrant and the fragrantNOT pinks. Two books that go into this subject are from slower times when reading was not just for information. For inspiration and prose that melds the mystical and practical hemispheres of the brain, I hope you can find the following two books that do justice to some fragrant dianthus species (among many other fragrant plants) -
The Fragrant Path, Louise Beebe Wilder (inexpensive reprints available)
The Fragrant Year, Helen van Pelt Wilson & Leonie Bell (awful shame to be out of print)
Continuing to write for novices, suppose you're looking at all those species of Dianthus on the NARGS list, whose names are written in Latin. Well, a great way to access an alphabetized list of any genus with its species and cultivars alphabetized in the DG PlantFiles is to:
-- Click on the Guides and Information tab at the top of your DG web page
-- In the right column, click on Plant Files
-- Next, on the left, you'll see a green bar that says, "Click here to search for plants" - click on that
-- In the box that comes up -
----- type Dianthus in the box for genus
----- Where it says "sort by", click on the menu and set it for Latin name
----- Next, click on Search
You now have a list of many Dianthus species and cultivars that corresponds exactly to the NARGS list by alphabetical order. It won't be a perfect match, so www.google.com can come to the rescue.
On a side note - if only the DG wintersow database were similarly organized, rather than by common name. All species of any given genus do NOT necessarily germinate the same way (let alone behave the same way). That's one reason why it's such a shame that when you submit data to the DG wintersow database, they eliminate the correct botanical name you give and substitute a common name that will not differentiate between possibly 100s of species within the genus of the plant to which the plant you submitted belongs.
I did index a great thread on dianthus from this forum y'all might find helpful:
Edited on 12/15/09 to say that Michael_Ronayne has become a major force on DG for the Dianthus genus, and when cruising the NARGS list (or just researching Dianthus species & cultivars for the sheer pleasure of it), there are links in a thread he started that I think will be very useful and enjoyable - http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1050879/ . I think he also has a thread going on the DG Hybridizers forum.
He is also trying to drum up interest for a forum dedicated to the Dianthus genus, so anyone reading this is encouraged to post there for that reason, as well.
With my shady hill, gentians would seem to belong to one of the most magical genera I could grow. Todd's article - http://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/view/827/ - was wonderful to help me wade through this section of the NARGS' seed list. Thanks, Todd.
Okay, I've been really feeling bad about not contributing to this thread, because it is such a good and worthy subject. I guess we've all been busy. We are helping with phase 2 of the NARGS seed exchange, to insure its timely completion. Phase 3 (seed distribution) will begin with our Chapter meeting, January 10th. Of course, foreign orders and donors' orders have priority. I used the interactive pdf order form, available on the NARGS website. Pretty slick. I encourage everyone to take a look at it. Below is my order.
Anyway, we all know how invaluable Todd is for the rest of us, and that he writes such good DG articles. These are the ones apropos to our listing by him. I hope I didn't miss any.
As a NARGS seed exchange update, our Chapter started out on January 10 with about 600 or so orders to fill. As more orders continued to arrive, we were caught up by Jan. 17, and now have basically been filling orders as they are received. The number of orders is down significantly form other years, although I am not sure what this means quantitatively.
That should mean there will be a larger compliment of choices for Round 2! (There is always a silver lining . . .)
And it's only $5 per 20 packets (25¢ each)!
But you must buy in a batch of 20.
If you haven't done your first order, there is still time. Orders must be received here in Minnesota by February 11. You must be a member of the national organization (NARGS) to participate.
***The preceeding commercial was brought to you by an enthusiastic Minnesota member of the North American Rock Garden Society.***
I got mine today - good job! Thanks to you, Rick, and the others in your chapter for making this possible!
I left it rather late, but still got 86% of my first choices - not that I'd ever even complain if I only got second choices - it's all fabulous!
I have received my Seeds. Yay! and thanks. I was wondering about round2. I see on the website that they will begin filling round2 orders on May 7. I haven't received any info in the mail about it. Has anyone else?
Here are my seeds from this year. I have already sown most of them. I noticed the round2 seed list was online and will be going through it to make some selections. In past years they have sent a form and instructions on ordering round2 seeds. I am assuming that will arrive shortly.
27 Aconitum napellus blue to 1.5m 138 303
28 Aconitum napellus 'Album' white 1m 109
63 Agapanthus praecox ssp orientalis blue/white 80-100cm 37
237 Anemone rupicola white-pink/violet reverse 15-30cm 65 306
258 Anomatheca laxa 'Joan Evans' white/red eye to 30cm 172
293 Aquilegia buergeriana 'Calimero' purple/yellow 15-20cm 31 2
392 Arisaema fargesii red-brown/white 60cm 4 282
675 Cardiocrinum giganteum white/streaked purple 1-3m >
676 Cardiocrinum giganteum v yunnanense white/purple-red streak 1-3m >
756 Clematis alpina 'Ruby' soft red 2.5m 65
765 Clematis hirsutissima dark violet-blue 15-65cm >
784 Clematis serratifolia 'Kugotia' yellow 2-3m 2
1108 Digitalis ferruginea rusty/golden to 120cm 33 307
1115 Digitalis parviflora red-brown to 60cm >
1143 Dodecatheon sp red 20cm 21
1468 Gentiana asclepiadea 'Knightshayes' blue 80cm 136
1508 Gentiana wilsonii blue to 30cm 53
1544 Geum rivale red 25cm 67
1551 Gladiolus 'Boone' apricot to 75cm 22
1634 Helleborus orientalis pale peach 15
1732 Indigofera australis red .5-1.75m 69
1934 Lilium martagon mix to 2m 100
2031 Magnolia virginiana cream-white to 10m 274
2061 Meconopsis superba white to 2m 135
3124 Trillium flexipes f walpolei (cf) maroon flr/white ovary 20-50cm 282
We could do germination reports, too, if there is any interest?
From seedings on Feb. 1 and 15, I have seedlings now of: Arenaria grandiflora
Astragalus angustifolius (got this to compare to my existing plants) Dalea candida v. candida
Eritrichium canum v. canum
Geranium traversii v. elegans
I would be interested in germination reports. We should have a different thread for that. I try to keep records of that anyway. I'll do the honors. And if you could repost your info their, Alta, that would be good.
Yes, I went for 100 pkts too. Some will go straight into the frig or feezer for fall planting or spring 2010. With 100 choices, I got a lot of stuff I never would have chosen before, because they weren't so high on my wish list. And since everyone has already had a chance to order in the first round, I don't have to feel like I might be "stealing" some of the really choice seeds in short supply from people who know how to grow them, just because I want to experiment. And they aren't in short supply anyway!
Wonderful contributions above, thanks everyone. My original idea, which I did not explain very well, was to dedicate each post to one genus, and then within each post to provide any information about that genus that would help folks understand how to choose species and cultivars of that genus listed on the NARGS seed exchange list for their respective site conditions and/or creative ways of getting around any limitations of those site conditions. But, Leftwood, posting all those links to Todd's articles together like that was great - would have been a shame not to do that. All posts were much appreciated.
Soooo, I have some more to share, and will do a post on Salvia (sages). I certainly look forward to seeing what else y'all can continue to come up with. I'm not sure I can get back to this thread until next year - am just taking today to visit this forum - but am looking forward very much to spending more time around here after New Year's.
A huge thank you to Todd for your work on the new NARGS website, and to everyone else involved. For those who might be reading this and haven't yet mosied over to NARGS, here's the link - http://www.nargs.org/ .
The NARGS seed exchange is now open, and as I posted elsewhere with respect to the American Primrose Society, growing plants obtained from seeds from the NARGS seed exchange will also benefit NARGS and its membership.
Gosh, I didn't even see this thread before...I'm red in the face! Sorry I have never written anything on Salvia...I don't grow them as most are pathetic in my climate and I like to write about plants I personally grow.
Todd - you have written so well about so many different genera, that I don't think you need to get red in the face about sage. But I do wonder what the northernmost sage might be...what an amazing sage that one would be.
Well, at the risk of being redder in the face than you since I'm not expert at all in germinating the kinds of seed I ordered, I'll get over to that thread. There was one especially for which I stampeded to the post office before it closed on the day the NARGS list went up, and I will appreciate all the help I can get with that one.
Bluespiral, off the top of my head, a few of the salvias that are fully hardy here include S. nemorosa (and all the various cultivars and ssp.), glutinosa, patens...
I'm sure there are many others... I need to explore those of the Caucasus, northern & alpine Europe, etc. a lot more...
Thank you, Alta. Before discovering this forum, I had no idea what a horticultural paradise the far north could be. Of course, I always wondered; especially after reading (do not remember where) about how footprints in arctic snow could fill with red algae almost before said foot had moved along to the next step. If evidence of life is ever found on any of the other planets or moons of our solar system, who could care if it's not a rose or marigold? (Actually, I think the possibility of life on planet(s) outside of our solar system might have been raised lately by some analytical evidence. Perhaps the archives of NASA's picture for a day might have something on that - http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html )
Well, I digress - sorry about that. I do enjoy the botanic/horticultural learning potential on this forum very much.
I was totally delighted with the seeds from NARGS!
Aconitum lyconitum neapolitanum
Aconitum sczukini blue
Alyssum montanum sp. white
Amsonia tabernaemontana v. salicifolia
Aquilegia vulgaris v. stellata "Green Apples"
Arabis flaviflora yellow
Campanula glomerata v. alba
Campanula trachelium blue
Campanula trachelium light blue
Campanula trachelium v. alba
Clematis heiracliefolia blue
Clematis heiracliefolia v. davidiana
Cleome hassleriana red
Filipendula rubra pink
Iberis bernardiana pink-violet
Meconopsis latifolia blue
Paonia delavayi v. lutea
Thalictrum aquilegia v. alba
Thalictrum flavum ssp glaucum yellow
Welcome to the forum, CLScott!
Thalictrum flavum subsp. glaucum is the bluest foliage plant I have ever grown, I think.
Well, now I have some seedlings in the window of Corydalis wilsonii that may take over the King Blue spot for me . . .