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Kelaidis
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Title: Member
Joined: 2010-02-03

Omigod, Marko! Hope you didn't use that Galanthoavatar on the SRGC site: they'd all be wanting seed and adding it to their collections! ;D

For every minion of the peaks there are a dozen steppe children growing in the dry Continental heart of all hemispheres still unknown to horticulture.

Boland
Boland's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-09-25

Well my avatar is a bit squished and I don't know why...where's Hugh?

That iris is to die for...but another that would not like the aquatic alpine conditions I have to contend with.

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

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

McDonough wrote:

Hoy wrote:

This Gladiolus we found growing in almost pure volcanic rock a few places on Mt Kenya. Don't know the species. Anybody who has suggestions?

Trond, I posted links to both of your photos to the Pacific Bulb Society group, and I have an answer for you, it is Gladiolus watsonioides.  See the following two responses, there are some cultivation clues.

Response from John Grimshaw, Gloucestershire, UK:
This is Gladiolus watsonioides in its finest form, once known as G.
mackinderi. It is one of the outstanding plants of Mt Kenya.

I am currently selecting images for my talk 'Switchbacks Yes, Suburbs No:
Alpines in Tropical Africa' which I'll be presenting at the NARGS Western
Winter Study Weekend in Medford, Oregon, on Saturday March 6th - more
details available from:

http://www.nargs.org/images/stories/wwsw/west10home.html
Gladiolus watsonioides will be one of the plants I'll be speaking about.

Response from Ernie DeMarie, Tuckahoe NY:
It is Gladiolus watsonioides, which I remember well from some material a prof
brought back from a trip to Kenya and gave to me back when I was doing my thesis
work (on pelargonium species tissue culture) at Cornell. I grew it there and at
NYBG for many years, it never really goes dormant in the sense that it does not
like to go bone dry for long periods of time.  It makes scads of cormlets and is
self fertile.  In a cool greenhouse it tended to flower in summer.  A very
pretty plant and not terribly difficult to grow.

Hello folks, I am back! Been offline for a week (skiing cross country in the mountains).

Thanks Mark, I have registered the name! Watsonioides is an appropriate name, the glad reminded me of Watsionias i saw in South Africa.

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

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

In case anyone is wondering, I just edited the colour of the text in the quote above, so that it was visible against the white background... my first official act as moderator.  8)

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

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

Sounds like a wonderful trip, Trond.  I assume it was back-country skiing, as opposed to track-set routes?  I hope you were able to take some photos!

Here's a scenery-based photo for today... the subalpine-alpine meadows of Healy Pass in Banff National Park, which can filled with Erythronium grandiflorum around the July 1st weekend in a good bloom year.  

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

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

Skulski wrote:

Sounds like a wonderful trip, Trond.  I assume it was back-country skiing, as opposed to track-set routes?  I hope you were able to take some photos!

Not back-country this time! We had to follow tracks as the snow was very unfirm. Even with skis you sank 1m deep due to no mild weather at all since the first snowfall. We have a small cabin at the timberline - it is not alpine, more an undulating plane with no high peaks, just piggybacks! Furthermore it was cold, about -20 oC and I did not bring my camera either! (My wife had hers.)

Here's how the landscape looks like 1100-1200m (last spring and last fall):

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

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

I like your Banff picture, Lori! The Banff area seems to be worth making  acquaintance with! And I should love to beheld Erythroniums in situ. I have some selections in my garden and they behave quite well.

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

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

Just to show where we go skiing. This is from last year.

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

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

What a fascinating area, Trond!  Would the word "tundra" be an apt description?

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

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

Skulski wrote:

What a fascinating area, Trond!  Would the word "tundra" be an apt description?

Maybe it looks a little like tundra, but it is not. It is no permafrost and one of the reasons for few trees is that the area has been grazed for centuries (mountain dairy - a usage disappearing). The soil is shallow and acidic, consist of huge deposits of moraine or hard quartz type bedrock. The flora is relatively poor. Norway spruce (Picea abies), Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) and Downy birch (Betula pubescens) make up the treecover. Common juniper (Juniperus communis) and dwarf birch (Betula nana) are the commonest shrubs in addition to a lot of different Ericaceaes and crowberry (Empetrum nigrum).  You can find pockets with better soil and more interesting plants (at least for me) like orchids and wintergreens (Pyrolaceaes).

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

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