Autumn bulbs

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IMYoung
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-01-31

Super crocus, Mark.  The Saffron crocus is C. sativus, though. ;)

Ian  and/or Margaret Young ( -here it is usually Margaret)

Aberdeen , North East Scotland, UK
Zone 8a

www.srgc.net

Hoy
Hoy's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15

Lucky man, Mark! My croci were completely flattened by heavy rain. Even if we have gotten nice weather now they are impossible to revive.

Trond
Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

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

IMYoung wrote:

Super crocus, Mark.  The Saffron crocus is C. sativus, though. ;)

Maggi, I must have been in a garlicky state and thinking about Allium sativum ;D

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

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

Crocus sativus was looking mighty fine today; a photo while shaded from a bush and a photo backlit from the sun.  I was working on extending a flower bed today, about 15-20' from the Crocus planting, and I could smell this crocus' sweet perfume from that far away!  Sunny and warm today, which helps power perfumed flowers.

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

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

Splendid!  So do you actually collect the stamens to dry and use for cooking (re. saffron)?  Looks like you'd have enough there to make it worthwhile.  (It's a moot point here whether this is practical or not, as it's not hardy...  I have tried to grow it.  :()

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

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

Skulski wrote:

Splendid!  So do you actually collect the stamens to dry and use for cooking (re. saffron)?  Looks like you'd have enough there to make it worthwhile.  (It's a moot point here whether this is practical or not, as it's not hardy...  I have tried to grow it.  :()

No, I haven't actually collected the stamens & styles, but maybe I should give it a try.  I saw a TV show on the cooking network that explained saffron, showing the flower, and that if you peel it open, inside there is the "saffron part" (instead of saying stamens and styles). 

From wikipedia, a fairly in depth discussion on saffron, very interesting!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saffron
Here's a quote from it:
"C. sativus thrives in the Mediterranean maquis, the North American chaparral, and like climates where hot, dry summer breezes sweep semi-arid lands. It can nonetheless survive cold winters by tolerating frosts as low as −10 °C (14 °F) and short periods of snow cover."

I think C. sativus is much more winter hardy than 14 °F, as I've had mine for about 8 years.  It is VERY SLOW to get going and increase, but once established it appears to be one of the more reliable of the autumn crocus for this climate.  It is sometimes hard to gauge flower size from photos, but the flowers are relatively huge, similar to the size of C. speciosus but on shorter stems.

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

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

Skulski wrote:

So do you actually collect the stamens to dry and use for cooking (re. saffron)?

Oops, I see from the Wiki article that it is not the stamens per se, but the stigmas and styles that make "saffron" (guess I should have just said "saffron parts" too.  ;D)   Indispensible for paella and other dishes.   :)  

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

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

I do enjoy saffron-spiced dishes.

Found a map that shows where Saffron is cultivated and produced, seems that in the USA, it is produced in California (no surprise there), but also in Pennsylvania... which isn't terribly far from here, so I guess the New England climate is suitable for it.  With the heat, drought, and total baking it had this summer, it should be very happy.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e0/Saffron_crocus_sativu...

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

Toole
Toole's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-07-02

Nice autumnal 19c here today.

Colchicum autumnale alboplenum.

White form of Crocus banaticus.

Raised from NARGS seedex 2007,Colchicum cupanii has sent up another flower.

Cheers Dave.

Invercargill
Bottom of the South Island New Zealand
Zone 8 maritime climate
1100mm,(40 in),rainfall p.a.
Nil snow cover

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

Very nice Dave, the whiteness of the first two remind me of my garden today, after a fresh 6" of snow ;D  For many years I grew a form of Colchicum cupanii; it was one of my favorite little treasures, but sadly it disappeared a few years ago. 

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

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