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by Ian Young

We have been growing Tecophilea cyanacrocus for many years now and it is the bluest of blues in the plant world. We also have T. violaceae which has a wonderful velvety texture to the royal purple petals. Seedlings from these two forms come fairly close to the colour of the parent, provided that they have been kept separate from each other at flowering time.

It was when raising seedlings from our T. cyanocrocus leichtlinii that we started to get a considerable variation in the amount of white. The form is described as having a white star in the throat and the extreme variation is seen in the picture where the typical form and a very nearly white form with a blue flush are shown together.

There must be something fundamentally obtuse about gardeners. When a plant is known for its stunning blue colour we want the white form and if it was normally white then we want the pink form etc. etc.

Being typical of this school of gardeners we have been selecting out various forms from T.cyanocrocus leichtlinii and illustrate a couple of our favourites.

It is difficult to choose which we like best but I think it is the one where the blue comes about a third of the way down the petals (the picture with the most flowers in), it has a nice balance to it.

We have had these forms separated out for a few years now and they are multiplying up quite satisfactorily, each selection now fills a pot. For once the form that I like the best also seems to be the most vigorous, this does not happen very often I can tell you !

All forms set good seed but the second generation have not yet reached flowering size so we just have to be patient

Some Tecophilea pictures




White and blue forms


A White / blue form


A White / blue form



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