This site is for people who like plants -- growers, enthusiasts, aesthetes, novices and professionals, those who appreciate wild things and those who appreciate the cultivated. I garden in Chelsea, and I've been visiting people's yards for 20+ years in the course of my work. My goal is to make this blog a community project, so if you share my interests, please consider becoming a participant and contributing content -- Guerin. Info: guerinw@gmail.com

Sunday, April 10, 2011

I like them reliable and easy

Corydalis solida is a favorite of mine.  It comes up bright and cheery early in spring and doesn't embarrass itself before going dormant six weeks later.  The standard type is an ugly purplish color that I cannot put a name to, so it's best to start with a selection such as the brick red 'George Baker.' The plant will self-seed graciously and produce a variety of flower colors (which I'm too much of a softy to cull through for the best selections -- actually, I just lack the time and discipline).

Should he stay or should he go?
Once I ordered a set of color-forms from Janis Ruksans in Latvia. They all produced, but I lost track of most of them in just a few years. I still have one nice whitish-lilac specimen that I am determined to keep an eye on.  (I also received a number of odd crocus species, mostly fall-flowering, but again I was not organized enough to keep them apart from all the bullies that are better able to compete. Next time I will keep them in pots!).

What else is up? A few Iris reticulata. For the first time ever, most of my bulbs produced foliage but no flowers. Puschkinia libanotica (a very common and easy bulb with an impossible name) has advanced into new territories around my property -- not my favorite, but I'm grateful for its generosity. Crocuses, small and large. And Draba! How I love that little bright yellow crucifer in all its forms. Drabas are very easy from seed, and I am overdo in re-building my stock. More on them later.  
Puschkinia: striped squill

I'd pollinate that if I were a bug!

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