Thanks for some long-ago advice

rosefollyNovember 16, 2011

I'm throwing out a message in a bottle here.

Some years ago, someone who had moved from my part of California to a colder climate (Idaho? Montana? Not sure) gave me some advice on growing daffodils. I'm very sorry to say that I forget who this person was. It grew out of a thread on either this forum or the Cottage Garden forum, on fragrance and companion plants. This was at a time I was planting all sorts of daffodils recommended for warm climate gardens. Anyway, this kind person advised me to plant only tazettas, and that the others would not persist in my garden. Well, I wanted larger daffodils than 'Geranium', and I wanted yellow so 'Paperwhite' would not do. In the end I planted a number of varieties. And guess what -- they bloomed for a year or two or three, then all but the tazettas faded away.

This year I planted 100 'Golden Dawn', a large, yellow tazetta. And I wanted to extend my thanks for the wise advice I received years ago. I do hope that generous soul is still on the forum and chances to read this.

Rosefolly

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Campanula UK Z8

ah yes, tazettas - I also grow these along with my absolute faves, the jonquillas. Have you tried these? They are generally terrifically fragrant and also amongst the latest to bloom. Also, especially if you are keen on whites, the triandrus narcissi are essentially mediterranean and should do well in a warm climate.
After a few years of splurging on tulips, I too had a narcissi monent this year, planting many more of the smaller types - such a lovely thing to look forward to in the spring.
For me, tulips are harder to keep from one year to the next although they do well in my sandy allotment soil where they get a good summer baking. Even so, I generally only go for the species and Darwins ( but also end up succumbing to the lily flowered types, some of which are also proving to be reliably perennial).
100 Golden Dawn will surely look and smell spectacular.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 5:05PM
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rosefolly

Campanula, apparently here it must be tazettas and only tazettas. So I was told, and so my experiments have confirmed.

And actually it is the golden yellows I prefer!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 5:15PM
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sherryocala

Rosefolly, do you think it's too late to plant them now? We're both in Zone 9, so maybe I could give them a shot. How do you plant them - in groups? Of how many? How long does the bloom last?

Thanks!! You're a generous soul as well.

Here is a link that might be useful: If only sweat were irrigation...

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 9:16PM
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rosefolly

Sherry, it is probably late, but I planted them anyway. It hasn't gotten very cold here yet. I spread mine pretty far apart because I don't plan to dig them up to divide, ever.

Rosefolly

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 9:43PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Plant them Sherry! Even if they bloom a little later than normal I'll bet they'll still bloom. In a much colder climate here but I've planted daffs on New Years Day and still have them bloom that spring. Don't ask me how I got the trowel in the ground, lol!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2011 at 10:29PM
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sadie_pnw

I've gotten a lot of good advice here, too, Rosefolly, even though I sometimes don't realize it at the time. That was nice thing for you to say.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 12:52AM
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lou_texas(8a N Central TX)

Rosefolly, et al., the tazettas and jonquillas also do well in my Central Texas garden as does the ubiquitous large-flowered, long-cupped narcissus Ice Follies, which just happens to be my favorite (it has come back and multiplied for 30+ years) along with the jonquillas.

Although your climate may not match mine, I'm wondering if you've tried the small pink and white clusiana tulip 'Lady Jane'? It was recommended by Scott Ogden in his book 'Garden Bulbs for the South' so I tried it. Well, I'm now on my third year of growing it and so far so good with it returning - it makes a beautiful pink and white carpet and is a lovely change if anyone wants something besides yellow/white/gold.

Another heirloom bulb that grows well in my climate is the hardy amaryllis 'St. Joseph's Lily (Hippeastrum x johnsonii). It might be good for you others in the south. I have a hard-to-find pink and white striped one that was passed along to me from a friend whose grandmother brought it from Louisiana. Do any of you grow this one? I'm planning to get more - some of the red ones.

I'm also thankful for you who know so much about roses. Your conversations over the years have opened up a new world to me. So - thank you all for your suggestions and expertise.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 11:20AM
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rosefolly

Lou, tulips are very iffy for me due to all the gophers. My best performers have been Tulipa saxatilis, which I like a great deal, but I have to put a barrier between them and the rodents. Daffodils have the virtue of being inedible.

Harborrose, that is the beauty of this forum, isn't it, that we all help each other.

Rosefolly

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 12:16PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Just a tip about small rodents and planting bulbs. Dip them in hot sauce (any kind) before you plant them and then sprinkle the top of the soil with hot pepper as well. If they can't smell them they won't know they're there and dig them up. They hot sauce/pepper will not hurt or inhibit the bulbs growth in any way. Also for those who have problems with squirrels digging them up make sure you disguise the fresh turned soil in some manner. I usually put a large pile of leaves over them. Squirrels will dig in freshly turned soil because they're looking for other squirrels stashes. Since I've started doing these things I haven't lost a bulb to rodents!

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 1:14PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

You know I think that was me. It was in either the Robert Smaus book or the Pat Welsh book on CA gardening. Though I ended up digging up all my tazettas and trashing them. They were forming massive colonies and taking over.

It's always something.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 1:39PM
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rosefolly

HoovB, it was definitely someone who lived in the general Santa Cruz area, then moved to the colder north, possibly Idaho, I think to start some kind of garden-related business. Does that sound like you? If so, thanks for some excellent advice. And if not, well, thanks anyway -- I'm sure you have given me helpful feedback any number of times.

R

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 1:49PM
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cath41(6a)

A reliably perennial tulip for me has been Apeldoorn - easily 30 years. Mine is red. The yellow one was gotten by the rodents. It also comes in yellow with red markings. The red Apeldoorn has increased very slooowly over the years from 12 to about 20. One of the reasons for this is it gets hit by the rodents once in a while. I do give it a sprinkling of green sand every few years. Others that have lasted reasonably well have been Oxford and Blue Heron but both were in the path of the rodent army. Do I sound obsessed by rodents? Thank you Seil for your suggestions to prevent rodent damage I certainly need help in that department.

I don't know if this info is pertinent for those in warm climates.

Cath

    Bookmark   November 17, 2011 at 2:17PM
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zeffyrose_pa6b7(6b7)

I'm in a different zone but I have to add the daffy "Ice Follies" seems to grow anywhere-----it tries to take over my yard------

I do love the daffy season------when I was younger I would add some every year ---now I just enjoy the return of these beauties every year----One year I planted some Perennial Tulips which are still coming up----

Florence

    Bookmark   November 18, 2011 at 9:43PM
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daisyincrete Z10? 905feet/275 metres

On The Mediterranean Gardening Society's forum, one of the members from Israel, also recommended Narcissus papyraceus, N.Hawara, N. Tete a Tete and the daffodils Ice Follies, King Alfred and Erlicheer. He is very knowledgeable.

http://www.mgsforum.org/smf/index.php?topic=348.0
Daisy

    Bookmark   November 19, 2011 at 2:11AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

oops no not moi. sorry!

    Bookmark   November 20, 2011 at 6:23PM
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