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Author Topic: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).  (Read 2184 times)

Alan_b

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White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« on: June 13, 2017, 07:52:57 AM »
There are very many cultivars of Red Campion, Silene dioica, that seem to have been amassed over hundreds of years.  The RHS Plant Finder lists 35 results; I grow a few myself.  I was looking at these the other day and wondering why they were all red - that is why I had no representatives of White Campion, Silene latifolia.  In the area where I live White Campion is much more abundant than Red, by 100:1 or more.  But when I looked I found that there are no cultivars listed by the RHS, no double form, nothing with variegated leaves.  It seems such an odd contrast between two plants that, apart from flower colour, appear very similar.  But sometimes plants exist in gardens that the RHS doesn't know about so I just thought I would ask if anyone here grows White Campion with an unusual (non-standard) form.  Or if anyone can suggest a reason for the disparity of cultivar numbers between the two campions.   
« Last Edit: June 13, 2017, 08:46:32 AM by Alan_b »
Almost in Scotland.

arisaema

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2017, 08:18:47 AM »
Isn't S. latifolia usually biennial, while S. dioica is (mostly) perennial?
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Alan_b

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2017, 08:45:11 AM »
Oh, maybe that's it!  I looked up two companies that sell seeds of Silene latifolia, one described it as biennial and the other as a hardy perennial.  Short-lived, it would appear, so any cultivar would probably need to come true from seed.  That could happen but must be relatively unlikely which would explain the disparity in cultivar numbers.

One sometimes sees pale pink forms of campion that I had read were crosses between Silene latifolia and Silene dioica.  I wonder how long-lived these are?  Does anyone grow a cultivar of this type?  And presumably a white long-lived form of Silene dioica, should it exist, would pass unnoticed except by the very observant.     
« Last Edit: June 13, 2017, 08:48:38 AM by Alan_b »
Almost in Scotland.

Alan_b

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2017, 11:36:15 AM »
I have turned my attention to Silene dioica.  The RHS lists Silene dioica 'Alba Plena' (d) and Silene dioica f. lactea but neither with any current vendors.  Both would appear to be white and the former a double white so I was looking in the wrong species for a double white campion, it would seem. 
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Matt T

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2017, 08:07:34 PM »
An added bonus of Silene latifolia is the lovely evening scent.
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Alan_b

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2017, 07:24:05 AM »
Would that be a distinguishing feature from Silene dioica, Matt?  I've been wondering how one could tell a white form of Silene dioca from Silene latifolia, other than by waiting to see how long it lives.   
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Paul Cumbleton

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2017, 05:28:50 PM »
My wild flower book gives two distinguishing features: 1. In Red Campion (Silene dioica) the lower leaves have winged stalks whereas in White Campion (Silene latifolia) the lower leaves are unwinged.
2. The ripe fruits of Red Campion have teeth which roll right back when ripe, whereas in White Campion the teeth are more or less erect.
To add to the confusion, there is an albino sport of Red Campion - this is distinguished from White Campion by having purer white flowers and triangular calyx teeth.

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Matt T

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2017, 08:18:07 PM »
You can also distinguish S latifolia from white-flowered S. dioica by the calyx teeth - 4.5-8 mm long in the former, only 2-2.5 mm in S. dioica.
Also, S, latifolia normally show some red or purple pigment in the sepals, which would be lacking in white S. dioica.
Matt Topsfield
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majallison

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #8 on: June 14, 2017, 09:13:57 PM »
I have a Silene with the name 'Mauve', it came from Keith Wiley's garden Wildside. It really is a slightly strange colour & I assume it's a hybrid between dioica & latifolia. It's a male plant, so no seedlings.
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ian mcdonald

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2017, 12:18:34 PM »
We rarely have the true S. dioica here. They seem to be hybrids. For red dioica you need to go north. White campion are declining in our area, they used to be common on roadside verges and under hedges but the verges are mown and the hedges removed.

Olive Mason

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2017, 02:25:03 PM »
Which part of the country are you Ian?
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ian mcdonald

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Re: White Campion cultivars wanted (or pale pink too).
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2017, 03:49:16 PM »
Yorks.

 


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