Wednesday, 22 May 2013

We are back at present  in Scotland to cold north westerly winds and there are few new Meconopsis flowers out. There are many lilies planted in between Meconopsis and a lily relative I have had for many years is Cardiocrinum giganticum. I grow these from seed and they origally took 9 years to reach flowering size and the first one was 14 foot high (over 4 metres). The bulb is monocarpic and dies after flowering but there are off sets of varying age around the old bulb and once a few plants are established there are flowering spikes somewhere each year but the spikes are not so tall. Some of these plants are approaching 40 years old now and although the lily family is subject to viral diseases these have stayed healthy. In my main Meconopsis garden I have never planted bought in lily bulbs since these can often be virused which is spread by aphids.
 Bought in lily bulbs are in a different garden in the herbaceous border. Cardriocrinums  have lovely dark green foliage in summer (usually dark foliage is an adaptation to growing in shade) and they enjoy an annual top dressing of decayed leaf mould.