Celmisias tolerant of cold?

Submitted by Tingley on

I am thinking of ordering some Celmisia seeds to trial in southwestern Nova Scotia. Our winters are fairly wet, monthly average rainfall  for November =112 mm, December = 90 mm, January = 73 mm, February = 52 mm, March = 65 mm. Average snowfall during these months in cm is as follows N =7, D = 34, J = 59,  F = 40,  M = 36 cm. Our monthly average winter high and low temperatures in celcius are: N  7.6 / 1.3,  D 2.0 / -4.8,  J -0.3 / -8.1,  F 0.0 / -8.0, M 3.7 / -4.2

Some of the species under consideration are C. allanii, C. densiflora, C. hectorii, C. lyallii, C. monroi, C. ramulosa, C. semicordata,  or C spectabilis.

If any forumists have advice on which of these might have a fighting chance at success in my part of the world, I'd be in your debt!


Submitted by IMYoung on Sat, 12/28/2013 - 04:42

Hi Gordon.

Here in  North East Scotland we find that most Celmisias  can cope with our climate . We get around 1000 mm rain total  each year and can have frosts, mostly without snow cover, down to around minus 12, rarely minus 19 degrees c.   

We have not grown C. lyalli.

  After a particularly nasty winter a few years ago we did lose some plants - and that winter losses were reported from other milder areas on the east as well - caused by the long periods of minus 12 and worse - without any snow cover. Some found that the larger-leaved  species were  more vulnerable, but in Aberdeen, where many gardens have large displays of large-leaved hybrid Celmisias, these seemed to cope well with the harshest winters.

Since you can expect snow cover in your winter months the plants may establish pretty well. I'd certainly think that attempts from seed are very worthwhile - these plants are all so attractive in leaf and flower that they are so worthy of a place in any garden that thy should be tried.  Not always easy to get decent germination of seed, but  yes, go  for it!






Submitted by Tingley on Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:36

In reply to by IMYoung

Thank you for the encouragement Maggi! I decided to add Celmisia semicordata aurigans to my SRGC seed exchange order and have Celmisia ramulosa among the plants on my secondary round pick. Now that I think of it, perhaps ramulosa may have been a better fit for a first choice plant. We may have to just carry semicordata in and out of the greenhouse  to avoid the worst of winter.