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Author Topic: February, March, April/Autumn in the southern hemisphere  (Read 46750 times)

David Nicholson

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #30 on: February 08, 2007, 06:50:54 PM »
Maggi, fine, if they will take a little rain and I could keep them up close to the house wall down a North facing path, but I have absolutely no room to keep them in the greenhouse. I'm finding it difficult to get there myself.
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Lesley Cox

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #31 on: February 08, 2007, 11:01:55 PM »
Fermi's probably do get an extended dry period but my own are flowering by the time the real dry comes (not this year - it's been wettish right through) in late summer. The coppery one is flowering now but as I said above, I don't do the pinks so well though I think that's because they were a bit soggy in winter. I'll keep trying though.
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

HClase

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #32 on: February 11, 2007, 10:54:27 PM »
I've been away for a few days. Not physically, just virtually, when there's around half a meter of snow over everything and much more in some places I can't face everyone else's floral abundance!  But I'd like to comment about Leslie's Sorbus.

During a quiet time at a plant sale at our Botanical Garden last Fall I picked up Hugh McAllister's recent revision of the Genus Sorbus and was hooked.  He's been growing them in the Ness Garden near Liverpool for about 30 years and has turned the whole genus upside down and inside out.  Anyone trying to name a Sorbus ought to see what he has to say about it first.  I found that over half of the exotic Sorbuses (Sorbi?) grown in our Botanical Garden and a nearby park needed relabelling.  Amazingly I was able to find information on some of the original purchases made over 40 years ago!  McAllister's book is as good as any detective novel once you get into it!

The most important thing he found was that there are a very large number of apomictic tetraploids, both in "the trade" and in the wild.  These reproduce asexually, and although they have seeds, the seedlings are exact clones of the single parent tree.  This means that a lot of the "selected varieties" in the trade are meaningless, and it's not necessary to graft or take cuttings - you get better plants from seed.  Others, such as the European S. aucuparia and our S. americana are dipoids and reproduce - and hybridise - in the usual way.

So to get to S. koehneana:  The one sold by nurseries under this name he traced back to Botanical Gardens in Copenhagen and St Petersburg; it's one of those apomictic tetraploids, and has been renamed S.fructicans  (I was able to trace the ones grown here in St John's back to Denmark via Norway and its description fits well with S.fructicans.) There is also a diploid, correctly named S. koehneana, but it is not grown commercially.  I'm not saying that Leslie's plant must be S.fructicans, but it's a possibilty.
Howard Clase, St John's, Newfoundland.

Lesley Cox

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #33 on: February 12, 2007, 03:04:56 AM »
That's very interesting Howard and I'll look out for the book. As yet I've not spoken to the owners of the nursery mine came from though I will when I get around to it so don't know how they propagated but I'll certainly try some of my fruit and hope they germinate.

I just went out to see if the fruit had seed in and they have, just a single seed with 3 or 4 undeveloped ones in each berry. The fruit are holding on the tree much better than in 2 previous years that it has had any. The top leaves are going quite a deep chocolate colour and the pale green almost translucent fruit look lovely among them.
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

HClase

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2007, 09:59:27 PM »
Its sounding more like S. fructicans every minute, here's a description based on McAllister's:-

Multi-stemmed shrub up to 2.5 m.  Leaves have numerous small toothed leaflets which turn first chocolate and then fiery red in fall.  Flowers and fruit white.   Black buds with white hairs at the tip and along the scale margins.

I was surprised to hear that yours were starting their autumn colours already, it was only 8 weeks ago we were in your part of the world in late spring (seems like dream!)  But with your much milder winters things get started earlier and ripen earlier too I suppose.  We were surprised to find what we think of as autumn flowers already open in NZ in November (e.g. Foxgloves).
Howard Clase, St John's, Newfoundland.

Lesley Cox

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #35 on: February 13, 2007, 10:21:37 PM »
Well Howard, mine's already about 3m high and only 3 years old but many things do grow taller here than in the UK for instance. Nor is it multistemmed, just a single trunk but there are a couple of below ground suckers which I intend to remove as I have crocuses, snowdrops and a few other things underneath so I want a canopy, not a bushy plant. I'll report on the fire colour later. I don't think it was especially red last year, not compared to say S. sargenteana, aucuparia or hupehensis (you can tell I like the rowan family). I'll have to wait until spring to observe whether there are black buds with white hairs at the tips. Whatever it is I think it's a beautiful small tree.

The start of autumn colour usually depends on how dry we have been. Very dry, early colour. This summer has been cool and damp but there's still colour starting on willows and poplars and the first orange on Acer palmatum vars. Other things are still bright green.

I think we have wild foxgloves in flower just about all year round. Certainly spring through late autumn
« Last Edit: February 13, 2007, 10:26:26 PM by Lesley Cox »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

HClase

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #36 on: February 14, 2007, 12:46:29 PM »
Hi Lesley,

Maybe yours is a graft? McA says they are sometimes grafted as standards.  Are the leaves of the suckers the same as those of the top?

S. hupehensis is even more of a mess!  I'd don't have the book at home, so this is based on my notes.  There are two taxa in cultivation called S. hupehensis, one with white berries and one with pink - both with several horticultural variety names.  McAllister found that both are apomictic tetraploids, and calls the pink berries ones S. pseudohupehensis and the white berried S. glabriuscula.  The type specimen for S. hupehensis is diploid and identical to a plant already named S. discolor, so the name S. hupehensis is now invalid. S. discolor is not widely in cultivation.

Of course you don't have to agree with McAllister, but as far as I can see his work is becoming accepted by botanists, even though it will take some time to get into Nursery circles!  It seemed pretty persuasive to me, but I'm not a real botanist.
Howard Clase, St John's, Newfoundland.

Lesley Cox

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #37 on: February 14, 2007, 09:45:47 PM »
The leaves from the suckers are identical in every way - size, shape, colour, texture, dentation -so I think not a graft. There's no obvious graft ring either above or below ground.

As for hupehensis, I don't think I'll get into that one. I have a pink berried form under that name and one which starts white then turns pink just as the fruit are beginning to shrivel. Their autumn colour tends to be dark, plummy red.

There are many new hybrids in the Sorbus family, some with enormous fruits and leaves whose autumn colour sears the skin, it's so hot. They are gradually getting around NZ and I am always on the lookout for a new one as I'm totally obsessed by autumn colour.
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

David Lyttle

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #38 on: February 17, 2007, 09:55:47 AM »
Something a bit different, Puya berteroniana flowering in the garden of the Botany Department , University of Otago. It is a bit past its best but has given us a marvellous display over the last few weeks. It is a native of Chile. The origin of this particular plant is a mystery.
David Lyttle
Otago Peninsula, Dunedin, South Island ,
New Zealand.

Lesley Cox

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #39 on: February 18, 2007, 09:17:19 PM »
Across town in the Early Bulb Display thread, there are a couple of pics of an NZ raised narcissus called `Betty Mae.' I don't know it and don't know the lady herself but at last year's NZAGS show I bought a campanula called `Betty Mae.' It must be a seedling from our own very special `Maie Blyth,' though larger, looser and somewhat coarser (sorry BM) but has the same wide, flat flower with a thick, waxy texture and a little crimp or pleat in the middle of each lobe. I wonder it it is the same lady? and who is she?
The lady in question is Betty Clark, see more in the Dunblane Early Bulb Day pages. M
« Last Edit: February 18, 2007, 10:57:46 PM by Maggi Young »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #40 on: February 18, 2007, 10:19:43 PM »
That's a lovely and unusual campanula, Lesley, and the Puya looks unreal!
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Lesley Cox

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #41 on: February 19, 2007, 03:48:24 AM »
Following Maggi's second note about `Betty Mae' in the Dunblane Early Bulb Disply page, I DO know her. I know Betty Clarke quite well in fact and she certainly is an enthusiastic grower and hybridiser of dwarf Narcissus. Perhaps not so much nowadays, but many good things came from her little nursery in Ashburton.

I had a look through the member list here on the Forum (218 at present). It astounds me that there are no names from north of the Waitaki River in NZ, none to recognize as such any way. No-one from Christchurch at all which those there at least, would claim to be the alpine gardening "capital" of NZ. Not that we in Otago and Southland believe that of course, but the largest part of NZAGS's membership is from that region. Where are the Anns, the Joans, the Melvas, Kims, Adrians, and Dolinas; the Jennys, Andrews and Marions and hundreds of others who are dedicated growers of alpine plants and dwarf bulbs. Do they even lurk a little?I can see that when Ian visits us next January, he and we in the south will have to do a massive public relations and publicity excercise to re-educate those poor, deprived and starving people.
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

fermi de Sousa

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #42 on: February 19, 2007, 06:20:23 AM »
Finally had a chance to download some pics, so here they are!
Firstly a campanula growing in Otto's driveway in pure clay and gravel, C. x stansfeldii. Of course, he lives in the Dandenongs in relatively moist conditions but nonetheless this is exposed and bleak albeit well-drained!
The next is a Zephyrathes grown from seed as Z.fosteri, but may not be! Nice deep colour anyway.
The third is Talinum rugulosum grown from seed and flowering well for a third year in a row! Actually the best flowering so far, so I'd better collect seed as it'll probably take this endorsement as "the kiss-of-death"!
cheers
fermi
Mr Fermi de Sousa, Redesdale,
Victoria, Australia

fermi de Sousa

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #43 on: February 19, 2007, 06:27:31 AM »
A few more from our garden.
An Australian native bulb, Calostemma purpurea, the garland lily.
The first bloom on Cyclamen graecum growing in a raised bed outdoors.
Two pics of a bulb received as Ismene festalis, one of the "Peruvian daffodils" in full bloom 2 weeks after being planted!
cheers
fermi
Mr Fermi de Sousa, Redesdale,
Victoria, Australia

fermi de Sousa

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Re: February/Autumn in the southern hemisphere
« Reply #44 on: February 19, 2007, 06:30:46 AM »
And before you ask, Lesley, yes, the pink Zephs have set seed! Have your MAF list ready!
cheers
fermi
Mr Fermi de Sousa, Redesdale,
Victoria, Australia

 


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