Spring Crocus 2010

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Mark McD
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Joined: 2009-12-14
Spring Crocus 2010

I started this thread "Spring Crocus 2010" to post photos and information on the popular spring crocus. This year has been the mildest and earliest spring flowering ever, advancing the season for "first bulbs" by two full weeks over the last 10 years, with lots of species and hybrid crocus pushing the season to an extraordinarily early start. One species that is barely visible one day and all of a sudden after a warn day leaps forward into full flower is Crocus kosaninii.

I received the plant as C. biflorus ssp. pulchricolor, however it is a mistaken ID, the plant illustrated is most likely C. kosaninii. The first photo shows early anthesis with lots of very small perky flowers, with many more buds coming. It is a bee magnet.

Boland
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Joined: 2009-09-25

Not familiar with that species...looks partway between a tommie and etruscus.

I'll win the prize for the latest crocus to bloom..I usually have some that make it to late May.  It will be mid-April before my show really begins...most of you will be finished then.

Todd Boland
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
Zone 5b
1800 mm precipitation per year

Hoy
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Joined: 2009-12-15

Here are some of my plants. I am not sure of the names, many cross and self-sow here. We have had a very fine day today, reached the 10C mark! However I was too late home to catch the blooms fully open.

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

Boland
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Trond, I think you have, in order, C. etruscus, C. tommasinianus 'Ruby Giant' and C. chrysanthus 'Gypsy Girl'...Mark can probably verify if this is correct.

I have three cultivars open today...C. chrysanthus 'Gypsy Girl' and what I think is C. tommasinianus, although they look surprisingly like Mark's kosaniniii.  The second photo is either C. chrysanthus 'Cream Beauty' or 'Romance'

Todd Boland
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
Zone 5b
1800 mm precipitation per year

Boland
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Trond, on second thought, the crocus I ID'ed as 'Gypsy Girl' is more bronzy than mine, so I think it might in fact be 'Fuscotinctus'.

Todd Boland
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
Zone 5b
1800 mm precipitation per year

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

Boland wrote:

Trond, I think you have, in order, C. etruscus, C. tommasinianus 'Ruby Giant' and C. chrysanthus 'Gypsy Girl'...Mark can probably verify if this is correct.

Hard to tell until the flowers are open to see stamen and stigma characteristics, so Trond, please post photos again of these same plants if you're able to catch them open.  Regarding C. chrysanthus cultivars, a Scottish Rock Garden Society member created an excellent photographic essay that diagnostically shows various chrysanthus cultivars... I'll find the link and post here.

Boland wrote:

I have three cultivars open today...C. chrysanthus 'Gypsy Girl' and what I think is C. tommasinianus, although they look surprisingly like Mark's kosaniniii.  The second photo is either C. chrysanthus 'Cream Beauty' or 'Romance'

I believe the C. kosaninii has a different disposition... thin narrow tube, small flowers, and a dark tube where the color ascends part way up onto the petals on the outside, although photos of this species from Serbia show lots of variation.  Also note the stamen and stigma differences.

On the C. chrysanthus cultivar, I would go with 'Romance', based on the light yellow flowers with the outer petals near white at the apex, see:
http://www.srgc.org.uk/smf/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=3139.0;attach...

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

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

Hoy wrote:

However I was too late home to catch the blooms fully open.

This has been my great frustration when I was working, asking myself over and over again: "why do I plant species crocus?", I almost never get to see them open, and invariably on the weekend it'll rain and I can completely miss seeing some species and varieties with open flower some years.  Now that I am home and unemployed, I get to see them (and photograph them) everyday. :D

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

Boland
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Joined: 2009-09-25

I think MY Gypsy Girls are Fuscotinctus as well!  I went back and checked my older pictures and Gypsy Girl has purple stripes with just slight feathering that does not reach to the edge of the sepals.  On Fuscotinctus the feathery is more pronounced and does reach the edge...you can see that on both Tronds and mine.

Mark, pics I've seen of kosaninii show yellow at the base of the tepals on the outside and inside.  Your base looks darker, but as you say, there is variation.

Todd Boland
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
Zone 5b
1800 mm precipitation per year

Boland
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Title: Member
Joined: 2009-09-25

Mark, was that crocus chrysanthus article by Tomas Huber?  I have a copy of photo plates taken by him in an article he wrote but be darned, if I know the original source.  I use his pictures all the time to try and ID my chrysanthus and tommies.

Todd Boland
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
Zone 5b
1800 mm precipitation per year

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

Boland wrote:

Mark, was that crocus chrysanthus article by Tomas Huber?  I have a copy of photo plates taken by him in an article he wrote but be darned, if I know the original source.  I use his pictures all the time to try and ID my chrysanthus and tommies.

Actually, he (Mr. Huber) made two of them, each is a multi-page thread... a wonderfully useful work.  I'll refind it and provide links for all; I'm off to watch some TV to unwind for a bit  8)

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

Hoy
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Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15

Thanks both of you. I can remember planting cultivars of etruscus and chrysanthus and others too. Regarding 'Ruby Giant' I know I have some of them as well, but I thought they had another deeper color. I have several of  "big" blues (or what you will call those colors) of different hues. I have several small ones (Crocus tommasinianus?) too of colors from white, cream, yellow and blue. Those seem to interbreed. I have planted them in my lawn not bothering to separate cultivars.

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

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