Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Crested Gentian
Gentiana septemfida

Family: Gentianaceae (jen-shun-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Gentiana (jen-shee-AN-uh) (Info)
Species: septemfida (sep-TEM-fee-duh) (Info)

8 members have or want this plant for trade.

Alpines and Rock Gardens

6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

9-12 in. (22-30 cm)
12-15 in. (30-38 cm)
15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Medium Blue
Dark Blue

Bloom Time:
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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By Evert
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1 positive
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive edselby On Aug 3, 2011, edselby from Littleton, CO wrote:

This plant is spectacular at the Betty Ford Alpine Garden in Vail, Colorado, so it obviously grows well at altitude and cold winter conditions. The plants there are about 15"-18" in both height and width. Wish I could get them to grow in Denver.

Neutral bluespiral On Jan 17, 2007, bluespiral from (Zone 7a) wrote:

For those who'd like to try germinating this tricky-for-some plant, following are some methods that have worked for a few intrepid souls:

1) Tom Cothier's method: Sow @ 18-22*C [~64-71*F] for 2-4 wks; then move to -4 to 4*C [24-39*F] for 4-6 wks; then move to 5-12*C [41-53*F] for germination.

2) Rob's Plants method: Sow at 70*F using the baggy method. In 2002, he got 55% germination in 7 - 10 days, but these factors varied from year to year. He notes that this plant is especially susceptible to damping off fungus and suspects it germinates best with fresh seed

Rob's baggy method: Sow the seed on a moistened (damp not soaking) coffee filter paper; fold it over the seed; and placed the arrangement inside a ziplock baggie under growlights (unless germination requires darkness). To keep the filter paper from drying out, it may be necessary to occassionally spritz it with just enough spray of water to dampen it. Don't let germinating roots go too long before potting up or they may get too tangled up in the filter paper. The potting medium could consist of a mixture of 3 parts of: 1 part perlite (best) or sand (not too sharp) for drainage; 1 part milled sphagnum moss or peat for their anti-fungal qualities; and 1 part soilless potting medium.

3) Another site supports sowing at warm temp: 20*C (68*F)

4) 2nd edition of Norman C. Deno's book, Seed Germination Theory and Practice - Deno roughly agrees with method #1 above for G. sino-ornata and with method #s 2 & 3 for G. septemfida, except to add that germination should occur between 3 - 7 weeks


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Parker, Colorado
Mount Prospect, Illinois
Plainfield, Illinois
Pownal, Maine
Bridgewater, Massachusetts
Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts
Norton, Massachusetts
Bend, Oregon
Mount Hood Parkdale, Oregon

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