Epimedium 2010

124 posts / 0 new
Last post
Mark McD
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-12-14

Epimedium grandiflorum 'Dark Beauty' - partial spring to summer timeline.

This is among my very favorite eppies, a chameleon to be sure, almost a different color and aspect every other day.  It emerges with foliage that is near black-red, but quickly assumes more muted tones of red and green, eventually giving over to green but strongly tinged red on the older foliage, the new leaflets still black-red.  The flowers are large spidery two-toned lavender and purple, showy and worthwhile in their own right.  The famed "second flush" of foliage after initial flowering is almost as spectacular as the initial foliage, young leaflets blood red, shading to paler suffused red tones on slightly older leaflets.  Eventually new leaflets are luminous light green against the darker green of older leaflets, yet still sporting red juvenile foliage through the season.  Fall color is an unremarkable yellowish.

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

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

Another dark-leaf beauty, colorful aspects of Epimedium grandiflorum var. violaceum 'Bronze Maiden'.

This is a 1999 introduction by Darrell Probst, another of those dark-leaf selections that goes through a dramatic cameleon-like transformation of foliage color.  The mahogany brown-red foliage is so shiny that it can look like polished leather.  It is a solid clumper with showy sprays of lavender flowers above the neat foliage.  By June the leaves turn green, but new foliage in the second flush of foliage and sporadic new leaves all summer, are richly red-tinged.  Outstanding!

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

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

Three miscellaneous grandiflorums, E. grandiflorum 'Saxton's Purple', a fairly unique color, E. grandiflorum 'Princess Susan', a 1999 Darrell Probst introduction with showy bi-colored flowers of clean white and bright rose, and E. grandiflorum var. violaceum with lively flowers and contrasting dark color spring foliage.

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

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

Epimedium x sasakii (hybrids between E. sempervirens and  E. x setosum)

A modest species to be sure, but still attractive in a demure way.  Slow growing, attractive colored foliage in spring, sprays of small pale flowers. This one is now a bittersweet memory for me, as Sasaki Associates is the name of the company I was recently laid off from after 20+ years service.

I grow two forms offered by Garden Vision Epimediums, and his 2001 introduction E. x sasakii 'Melody', a more robust showy hybrid.  These have evergreen foliage, which can be seen in the last photo.

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

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

A portrait of Epimedium x 'Black Sea'

Sometimes listed as a cultivar of E. pinnatum ssp. colchicum, I found the hybrid parentage listed as E. pinnatum ssp. colchicum x E.pubigerum on the JEARRARD'S HERBAL web site: http://www.johnjearrard.co.uk/index.html
It's a super web site, scroll down to the list of genera and select Epimedium.

This hybrid is something special, with little else quite like it, a good candidate for hybridization efforts.  In photos 1-2 taken spring 2009, the evergreen foliage had been cut off early, to get a clean floral display, not that it is necessary in this hybrid because the flower stems soar past the old foliage for an aerial display.  Without the support of the old evergreen foliage at the base, the flower stems did not grow as tall, and rise with angular ascent, rather pretty I think. The clouds of pastel yellow orange-veined flowers put on a good show.

In photos 3-6 taken the previous year in 2008, I left the evergreen foliage on, and one sees a different effect in spring, looking more substantial, the dark red shiny basal evergreen foliage "grounding" the airiness of the new growth.  Photo 7 is a closeup view of the flowers.  Photo 8 shows the special feature of this hybrid; the beautiful red-black burnished autumn-winter foliage.  Photo 9 shows the same (younger) plant taken on New Year's Day 2007.

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

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

Epimedium x 'Black Sea' emerging shoots on 3-25-2010.

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

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

A couple more eppies.

Epimedium x youngianum 'Capella' - a spritely little thing with bright rose flowers (leaves of E. sempervirens 'Candy Hearts' in the background).

Epimedium grandiflorum 'Lavender Lady' - Darrell Probst introduced this in 2000, reportedly a spontaneous cross between E. sempervirens 'Violet Queen' and E. grandiflorum 'Silver Queen' found in Harold Epstein's garden.  Gorgeous spring foliage and showy flowers.

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

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

I am impressed, Mark! You have some collection! Many colors have I never seen before either. Takes time to view all the pictures too. Good to have something to do when I am tired of looking at the snow here (has snowed all week - seen no sun (not at home, but in the mountain, that is)).
Do you know Mark if any of your suppliers dispatch abroad?

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

Hoy wrote:

I am impressed, Mark! You have some collection! Many colors have I never seen before either. Takes time to view all the pictures too. Good to have something to do when I am tired of looking at the snow here (has snowed all week - seen no sun (not at home, but in the mountain, that is)).
Do you know Mark if any of your suppliers dispatch abroad?

So often, photos of epimediums only show close-ups of a few flowers, failing to depict the chararcter and charm of the whole plant.  As a result, it is difficult to get an idea about what an Epimedium species or cultivar will look like after a few years growth,  So this photographic essay is to demonstrate what these marvellous plants look like in the garden thoughout the seasons, to display the unique character of each.

Garden Vision Epimediums can dispatch internationally, although it is very expensive to do so.  There are European-based nurseries with good collections of Epimedium that might be able to ship at less cost.

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

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

Epimedium timeline threesome - Photos 1-10:  E. x versicolor 'Versicolor', E. pinnatum ssp. colchicum 'Thunderbolt', E. grandiflorum f. flavescens 'Chocolate Lace'.

These three species are planted side by side along a garden path.  The metamorphosis of each plant's appearance through an extended season is rather dramatic and visually captivating.  I will start out New Year's Day 2007 (and a couple days before), where the ground is completely frozen, there's a bit of snow, the grandiflorum cultivar has gone to bed, but evergreen E. pinnatum ssp. colchicum 'Thunderbolt' has shiny rounded leaves drenched blackish-purple revealing a network of green veins on each leaf, and semi-evergreen E. x versicolor 'Versicolor' turns a rich burnished red-leather color.

From here, the photos will progress through spring, into summer, and then back into fall and winter again.  A couple other eppies will be seen along the journey.  This timeline series will be in 3 installments.

We start with a few winter photos, then move on to the early Epimedium season at the end of March.  Epimedium x versicolor 'Versicolor' is particularly floriferous and beautiful, thus featured.

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

Pages

Log in or register to post comments