Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Friday, May 29, 2015

A Little Short for a Storm-trooper

My first Cardiocrinum giganteum is blooming, but unfortunately, it's a little short to be called "giganteum." It's shorter than me and I'm 5' 2"...







Like many things in the garden, it's a mystery why this plant hasn't behaved the way I've seen it behave in so many other gardens -- most notably the lath house at Far Reaches Farm, where they routinely seem to be over 8 feet tall. Possibly it wanted more compost or perhaps some aged manure? I might try side-dressing my others this coming winter, and see if that has the desired effect on the rest that have yet to flower. Last year it also was covered up for a good part of the summer by flopping foliage from neighboring plants, which have been moved this year into a different area of the garden. Perhaps the lack of sun stunted its growth, or convinced it to flower and reproduce as quickly as possible this year.

I just hope now it produces seeds and offsets like I've heard they do.



13 comments:

  1. Well, even if it is shorter than it should...I love it! I wish I could grow it. And I wish you´ll have luck with seeds and offsets

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  2. Despite it´s a little short I envy you for your Cardiocrinum giganteum. It is a wonderful plant which I saw first time far away in New Zealand, but overthere near Christchurch was a nursery who had a small field blooming Cardiocrinums. In our country you can buy the bulbs but they are very, very expensive, so I have not tried it yet. I wonder if they like our wet and often cold winters.
    So nice you have this beautiful Cardiocrinum blooming in your garden!

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  3. Now if it were 8 feet tall you wouldn't be able to see the flowers nearly as well!

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  4. Now perhaps it's one of those plants that wants or prefers to have a good space all to itself, hmmm...

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  5. I was thinking the exact same as Jessica, maybe a bonus that you can appreciate the blooms close up Alison.
    A plant I've never tried although I know my local nursery sells it. They state it is scented - is yours?

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    1. Angie, I didn't notice a scent when I was taking the photos, but after your comment I went out to check. There is definitely a lily-like scent, not as overpowering as some lilies, at least not yet.

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  6. Gertrude Jekyll had some interesting ideas on how to plant Cardiocrinum giganteum http://www.seniorwomen.com/news/index.php/eccentric-enthusiasts-botanical-garden I do the same omitting the sand and rabbit. Big hole lots of compost/manure whatever is on hand. They can take a fair amount of shade. Too much sun?

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  7. As noted above: saved you from needing a ladder to get these great shots.

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  8. Lucky you to have one blooming, no matter how tall or small.
    I too was wondering of it's short because it did not have to reach for the sun.

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  9. It is so beautiful, at least it has flowered for you! I think they need heavy feeding with as much as you can give them, but do you really want it 8ft tall?

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  10. I have grown this for years and there is always a long wait in between flowering. It sets copious seed but I don' t bother with them because they take about 7 years from seed. Instead as the bulb splits up after flowering I grow on the offsets. This way the wait is 4 to 5 years. Still a long wait. I suppose the answer would be to have bulbs of different ages. They are very greedy plants. I grew mine over a dead chicken and lots of manure. The chicken had died anyway, I didn' t sacrifice it for the lily.

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  11. This plant is new to me, and I won't pretend to remember the name. It has already left my brain, but it's gorgeous, nonetheless.

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