Cimicifuga / Actaea

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Mark McD
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-12-14

A couple of eye-catchers Trond!  The fruiting structures on true Actaea are one of nature's miracles, how they can be lumped into the dry-follicle seed structures on Cimicifuga is beyond me.

Here's a side-by-side composite view of Cimicifuga simplex starting to form dense spires of seed capsules, on the left, bright lime-green on the all-green leaved forms of C. simplex, and on the right, dark purplish capsules on the "atropurpurea" forms of the species.

Mark McDonough
Massachusetts, USA, near the New Hampshire border USDA Zone 5
antennaria at aol.com
 

Afloden
Title: Guest
Joined: 2012-01-15

In reply 15, Mark pictures a Cimicifuga that I grow! I believe mine are divisions of that exact plant! It should be Cimicifuga purpurea from Japan, not synonymous with C. japonica or C. acerina. Compton published a paper recognizing all three, but under Actaea. All three were recognized as Cimicifuga before though.

Also, C. cordifolia is misnomer for C. rubifolia from a very limited distribution in the southeastern US (about a 1/2 hour drive from me and its a beauty even in the wild and a late flowering, nicely-fragrant species). But, most plants under this name are C. racemosa. The true C. rubifolia which is pictured as "Blikfang" does look correct though. Even so, a few east Asian species are similar as is C. elata from the Pacific Northwest.

Mark, your pinkish-fruited Actaea is pachypoda var. rubra. Note the thickened pedicels which are present only in this species of the two North American ones.

Aaron

Mark McD
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-12-14

Greetings Aaron, so glad that you made it here to NARGS Forum!  Your commentary and insight on Cimicifuga/Actaea are most welcome, looking forward to hearing from you often on the forum.  I did a quick search and found the following link to a JSTOR document (for purchase) on the three species of Cimicifuga including C. purpurea.

Taxonomic Notes on Cimicifuga purpurea, Stat. Nov.
http://www.jstor.org/pss/3392219

Mark McDonough
Massachusetts, USA, near the New Hampshire border USDA Zone 5
antennaria at aol.com
 

copperbeech
Title: Guest
Joined: 2013-03-15

Tony wrote:

I bought Actea pachypoda 'Misty Blue' yesterday which has really beautiful foliage.

I know this variety is relatively new. I am just wondering Tony et al how this plant did for you this past season in your garden?

I have two small ones that I purchased a week or so ago and depending on the final growth dimensions I am debating whether to plant both together to maybe get more impact from flowers and eventually berries or go with just one and give the other away (nice of me eh? ;))

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