saxifragas I can grow in Connecticut

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RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Doesn't tufa also hold moisture, compared to other rocks like granite?  I would think this would also be a factor.

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Sellars
Sellars's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-29

For those who do not have access to tufa you could try growing Saxes in a mix without any soil to avoid the problems with pathogens that Peter talks about.  Our Saxes that are not in tufa are growing in granite rock crevices with a mix of sharp sand and crusher fines (the residue from rock crushing).  Fortunately such a mix is readily available locally in British Columbia as it is used by landscapers underneath pavers. For rock garden use it provides good drainage, has no pathogens and contains mineral nutrients from the crushed rock particles that Saxes seem to like.

Despite our summers being cooler than Connecticut, Saxes prefer being planted in our garden on north facing slopes with some shade provided by rocks.  Saxifraga oppositifolia needs even more shade in our garden to grow well and needs to be planted on north facing cliffs with very little direct sun, even in mid summer.

David Sellars
From the Wet Coast of British Columbia, Canada

Feature your favourite hikes at:
www.mountainflora.ca
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Anonymous
Title: Guest

I often grow plants in pots the first year or two.  This allows me to move them around if they get stressed.  I can determine how much sun they can tolerate.  I often have to move plants completely out of the hot summer sun to the North side of my home. 

Certain plants in my area only grow on the North face of ravines that receives almost no direct sunlight.  Others are limited to cold air slopes or areas where cold water is dripping over a cliff face.  These same plants grow in full sunlight farther North or at higher altitudes.

Correctly choosing aspect is very important.  Variations in incident sunlight on different sides of a home give the opportunity to grow a much wider range of plants.

I have also had problems with pathogens.  I solve this problem by growing many plants from seed and letting the fittest survive.  However, choosing an appropriate soil type that prevents disease is the best cure.

Unfortunately, growing lots of seedlings is not an option if you desire a specific cultivar.  I have lost many plants of expensive cultivars.  Ironically, one plant of a cultivar may die while another plant right next to it thrives.  I can only attribute this to pure chance.

vanachterberg
Title: Guest
Joined: 2009-10-06

Thanks, everyone.  Peter George seems to have the climate nearest to mine, so I'll try planting saxes in tufa from now on.  I wish I had bought some more tufa from that truck at Lyndhurst Museum last week!

By the way I have been a member of the Forum for over two years.  What do I have to do to stop being a Newbie? I am actually an Oldie!

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

vanachterberg wrote:

By the way I have been a member of the Forum for over two years.  What do I have to do to stop being a Newbie? I am actually an Oldie!

Hi Barbara, I can explain.  What you're seeing here is default behavior of the Forum software, where it names groups of users based upon how many posts they've added.  The attached "inside look" at the SMF Administrative console shows the groups and the increments between each group.  This is arbitrary "default" behavior right out of the box so to speak.  The names and levels are customizeable; maybe we need a group for "Oldie but a Goodie"  ;)

And just to make this post relevant to Saxifrages in Connecticut (or at least New England), click this link to see my pale pink Saxifrage fortunei which has been blooming for weeks, and is still in flower now  :D
http://nargs.org/smf/index.php?topic=593.msg11488#msg11488

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

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

David wrote:

Our Saxes that are not in tufa are growing in granite rock crevices with a mix of sharp sand and crusher fines (the residue from rock crushing).

Gee, and not thinking about it, I always just threw out the crushed fines that settle out in a bag of chick grit...

----------------------------------------

Barbara, the newbie designation has nothing to do with your time here at the Forum (or your age  ;D).  It changes with the number of postings you make.  It goes something like:
1-49 posts = Newbie
50-99 = Junior member
100-? Full member
etc.

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Lincks
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-02-16

I live in New York and am 20 minutes from Danbury, CT.  I have had mixed results during my first year growing saxes. The silver and kabschias grown in tufa and in hypertufa troughs have done pretty well.  The ones planted in the rock garden or in the soil have not done well.  Some of the silvers had their roots eaten.  The saxes purchased from Wrightman Alpines (get the $15 plants that are grown in mini tufa rocks) have done well.  The alpen rocks they sell consist of three plants planted in a nice sized piece of tufa.  So I have had mixed results and have lost about 20 plants grown outside of tufa or a trough.  I have considered the loss of the plants "tuition" towards learning how to grow a tough species in a non-alpine environment.  Mossies have not done well in NY.
McGregor's 2008 Saxifrage book is an excellent resource.

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