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Author Topic: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?  (Read 3296 times)

wildflower

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A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« on: January 02, 2011, 09:11:53 PM »
I found this wonderful gardening forum yesterday through Paul in Australia when I was looking for more info on Hepatica Nobilis. I live in the Pacific NW (Washington State, USA) and have bought some property in the country just about a year ago.

I am wondering about the gardening climate where I live. It seems to be a lot like that of Ireland (a girlfriend of mine now lives there). Do Hepaticas grow there natively? I grew up in Minnesota (midwest USA) and had Hepaticas growing  natively in the woods, but, those woods are drier than here in Washington in the winter. Does Ireland get a lot of rain in the winter? I am wanting to start growing Hepaticas in our woods here, but, am not sure if they do well in a wet climate. The soil here is acidic (at least in the natural wooded areas, mostly evergreens) and drains quite well, though.

Thank you...

Aimee (aka wildflower)

gote

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Re: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2011, 08:38:54 AM »
It is certainly well worth trying.
There is a misconception around that Hepaticas need high pH that is definitely not true for the European Hepatica nobilis.
Hepatica japonica (or whatever we care to call it) grows profusely in north Japan which is even wetter.
In a garden situation they are likely to prefer a somewhat lighter situation than they do in a forest.
However full sun would be to much.
Good Luck
Göte
 
Göte Svanholm
Mid-Sweden

Hoy

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Re: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2011, 09:16:52 AM »
Gřte, I do not quite agree with you regarding soil conditions. My experience is that H nobilis almost always grows where the soil contains some chalk even if the pH in the topsoil is sub 7.
They grows well in humusy topsoil in spruce woods but the subsoil has to be richer than normal.

Aimee, I can't tell you about Ireland, but H. nobilis is found naturally on the west coast of Norway with an extreme maritime climate. But it is possible that it is different ecotypes. In my garden H. transsylvanica is a better doer than nobilis. I wouldn't hesitate trying to grow either of them.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2011, 11:16:44 AM by Maggi Young »
Trond Hoy, gardening on the rainy west coast of Norway.

Natalia

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Re: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2011, 07:54:18 PM »

 About the humidity - the most beautiful wild populations Hepatica nobilis I saw in Northern Estonia. In several kilometres from coast of Baltic sea. They grew in dense fir forests with acid soils. Under a the superficial layer of humus is located poor sandy loam with plenty of combustible slate. Combustible slate - sedimentary rock containing a considerable quantity of calcium, hydrocarbons and sulphur.
 Now about рН soils. We will not put in one group of concept рН and the calcium content. We know that  рН soils can be more low 7 (sour soils), but thus in soil calcium in a significant amount can contain. For example, the Caucasus folded limestone, but rhododendrons love acidic soil, well grow.
 In our forests Hepatica nobilis grows in places where there is limestone beneath the soil, mostly on sandy moraines in acidic soils of coniferous spruce and pine forests.
Natalia
Russia, Moscow region, zone 3
temperature:min -48C(1979);max +43(2010)

Hoy

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Re: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2011, 09:02:53 PM »
This is the wood I find the best Hepatica populations!
Mixed deciduous forest with oak and hazel! The soil is moraine and contains marine sediments as it has been below sea level. Beneath a layer of sand and stone it is blue clay.
Trond Hoy, gardening on the rainy west coast of Norway.

Natalia

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Re: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2011, 06:06:33 PM »
Gorgeous forest!
Trond, thank you for your interesting pictures!
 But so different from our forests, where there are Hepatica.
 Now on soils - like oak gives acidic soil, hazel - is closer to neutral.
 These places are not very wet?
Natalia
Russia, Moscow region, zone 3
temperature:min -48C(1979);max +43(2010)

gote

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Re: A question re: growing Hepaticas in my area?
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2011, 01:27:14 PM »
Gřte, I do not quite agree with you regarding soil conditions. My experience is that H nobilis almost always grows where the soil contains some chalk even if the pH in the topsoil is sub 7.
They grows well in humusy topsoil in spruce woods but the subsoil has to be richer than normal.

Aimee, I can't tell you about Ireland, but H. nobilis is found naturally on the west coast of Norway with an extreme maritime climate. But it is possible that it is different ecotypes. In my garden H. transsylvanica is a better doer than nobilis. I wouldn't hesitate trying to grow either of them.

The fact that a plant grows wild in a specific location does not mean that it MUST have all the conditions of that location.
I have on the premises Hepatica npbilis in five-figure numbers and the soil does defnitely not contain any chalk. This does not mean that the soil has a calcium deficiency but that is a very rare thing indeed.
Göte
Göte Svanholm
Mid-Sweden

 


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