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By jmorth on Mar 27, 2015 11:55 AM, concerning plant: Trumpet Daffodil (Narcissus 'Pink o' Dawn')

The hybridizer, Crawford Radcliff, an Australian from Tasmania, created two cultivars of the same name in the same year (1931) from the same seed parent (Mrs. W. Moodie) but different pollen parents (this entry's pollen parent was Lemon Star, the other was Lord Kitchener).

Radcliff has created same-named daffodils on more than one occasion (ex.- LaGana, and I recall others). Why? Go figure...

This particular cultivar has an illustrious history in the world of daffodil breeding. It is seed fertile and was used in this capacity 22 times. It is also pollen fertile and was used 30 times in that role. Resultant cultivars number 42 named daffodils. The rest were numbered seedlings. The creators of the named offspring were all from Australia and New Zealand, except for four from Northern Ireland. This happened mostly in the middle part of the last century.

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By farmerdill on Mar 26, 2015 10:31 AM, concerning plant: Brussels Sprouts (Brassica oleracea 'Prince Marvel')

Grew Prince Marvel in Virginia's New River Valley. Transplanted in July, topped at Thanksgiving harvest at Christmas. Performed much better than Catskill and long Island improved under those conditions.

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By farmerdill on Mar 26, 2015 10:26 AM, concerning plant: Cabbage (Brassica oleracea 'Point One')

Very small, very early (1-2 lb conehead) hybrid. Performs well in spring planting.

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By Marilyn on Mar 26, 2015 12:04 AM, concerning plant: Crocus (Crocus sieberi subsp. sublimis 'Tricolor')

A beautiful and colorful crocus! I've grown a few of these before and they're a very special variety! They're so distinctive looking and all the colors complement each other in a wonderful and pleasing way. A cheery sight to see after a cold and snowy winter!

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By Marilyn on Mar 25, 2015 11:27 PM, concerning plant: Crocus (Crocus vernus 'Twilight')

After seeing Newyorkrita's pics of Twilight last Spring in the database and the bulb forum, I had to get 25 of them myself this past Fall. The flowers are a gorgeous deep purple. I've never grown and/or seen a crocus such a dark purple. Outstanding in the garden from a distance and close up! I'm getting more this Fall! A gem of a crocus!

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By Marilyn on Mar 25, 2015 10:59 PM, concerning plant: Snow Crocus (Crocus chrysanthus 'Cream Beauty')

Years ago, I bought many packages locally of what was supposed to be Crocus 'Blue Pearl'. The following spring, I realized that the flowers of Blue Pearl turned out to be Crocus 'Cream Beauty'. At first I was disappointed, but in time I discovered I loved Cream Beauty. The creamy yellow color of the flowers, mixed with the bright orange color of the stamens, makes this a beautiful and memorable crocus. It lasted many years in my garden until the wild rabbits discovered the clump. The rabbits ate not only the leaves, but also the flowers, and the bulb needs the leaves to store up energy for the following year.

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By Dutchlady1 on Mar 25, 2015 6:13 PM, concerning plant: Plumeria (Plumeria rubra 'Vera Cruz Rose')

This is a profusely blooming Plumeria variety; in the Florida Keys it never stopped blooming all winter long.

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By jmorth on Mar 25, 2015 11:18 AM, concerning plant: Trumpet Daffodil (Narcissus 'Snow Baby')

Nice forcing div 1 white trumpet dwarf daffodil bred by Brent and Becky of Brent anf Becky's Bulbs fame. Registered in 2014. 4 to 8" height. Opens w/ some yellow/green undertones, turns pure white.

Brent and Becky's description:
'One of our own seedlings, a tough little pure white, early blooming miniature that forces easily; sure to be a winner on the show bench and in your garden'.

Successfully forced.

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By mjsponies on Mar 24, 2015 1:55 PM, concerning plant: Upright Elephant Ear (Alocasia alba)

Absolutely stunning plant. Prefers bright light, dappled sun/shade. Fairly forgiving of watering mishaps and summer's monsoons.
I overwintered it in the greenhouse and it slowed way down, not putting out any new leaves. Now showing signs of a new leaf coming. Can't wait to see how it does this year.

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By mjsponies on Mar 24, 2015 1:52 PM, concerning plant: Dwarf Elephant Ear (Alocasia gageana)

Probably one of the easiest Alocasias to grow. Tolerates a variety of light conditions from mostly sun to mostly shade. Never missed a beat during the summer's monsoonal rains, nor during the dry season if I missed a watering....or 2. Over winter I left it out, just thinking I'd let it go dormant. After a couple of 28-degree nights, it just had a few "nipped" ears, but never did die back to the ground. Would recommend to someone who would like to grow some "Ears" but doesn't want to deal with the fussier ones.

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By farmerdill on Mar 24, 2015 1:50 PM, concerning plant: Garden Pea (Pisum sativum 'Karina')

A good midseason pea. Large but slender pods, average production, excellent flavor.

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By Marylyn on Mar 23, 2015 10:49 PM, concerning plant: Black Medic (Medicago lupulina)

This plant has popped up in between the bricks in my walkway, and in the poor soil between the walkways. It gets partial shade and absolutely no attention. It's a pretty mound of green and yellow right now, and looks much better than anything I have tried planting in that spot (except for the Vinca major 'Variegata,' aka "scary vinca," that I have been regretting and pulling for two years now), so I'm going to pull it from between the bricks and try to encourage it in the soil.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 11:34 AM, concerning plant: Louisiana Iris (Iris 'Dixie Deb')

Looks like the one I have, more of the common variety I believe. Fast grower, easily divided and propagated from seed. Makes a great background fence border. Grows in shade or sun, tolerates some drought or dry soil, but will wilt, fall over and not recover height very well if soil dries out for too long. Tends to start wilting or falling over in fall naturally.

Discards all fronds annually with new spring growth beginning in late winter. With spring and new growth, individual fronds start yellowing and die over couple months as new growth emerges. To avoid the unsightly mess and constant pulling off dying growth in spring, cut all the old growth off to the bottom with scissors or trimming shears in late November, early December before the new growth appears, or you can pulling dead debris off for months!

Seed pods can be harvested and sown in pots, or I just shallow bury the dry pods in the fall and transplant the seedlings.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 11:17 AM, concerning plant: Japanese Holly Fern (Cyrtomium falcatum 'Rochfordianum')

Great shade plant, easy to grow. Propagate by division, takes a year or two to regain good growth after division. Best success I've had is purchasing smaller 4-6 inch or gallon pots of small plants and planting with long-term growth in mind, without disturbing root system or dividing.

Easily subject to ice burns on fronds, or broken stalks from weight. Trim off any broken, damaged or yellowing fronds in February or early March to avoid damage to new frond growth. With late spring freezes, I have experienced damage to new emerging tender fronds, setting the plant back for the year.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 11:07 AM, concerning plant: Crown of Thorns (Euphorbia milii)

Propagating this plant is very easy from cuttings or branches broken off main plant. It is a type of cactus, so very hardy. However, any new cuttings or branches broken off NEED TO DRY FOR AT LEAST TWO WEEKS before repotting to harden and seal the pieces. Planting too soon will encourage rot at the cutting site, and you will lose the whole piece.

When cutting, use newspaper or do the cutting on grass as the white sap is very sticky and hard to remove. Do not know about toxicity of sap, but best to be cautious with sap. Goes dormant in the winter and loses all the leaves when I bring it in to overwinter.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 11:00 AM, concerning plant: Macho Fern (Nephrolepis biserrata 'Macho')

Great outside patio plant in cold zones. Does not like to be dry. Avoid direct sun, which burns the leaves. Easy to grow. Prefers moist climate or environment. Can grow well inside, but A/C or winter heating causes it to drop a lot of leaves. Growth is retarded or goes dormant in winter.

Dividing overgrown pot is easy. Use a long serrated knife and slice through clumps of older dead growth. Can pull off masses of old dead roots. Watch for new shoots developing in the root ball. Repot chunks, allowing room to spread and grow new fronds.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 10:53 AM, concerning plant: Harry Lauder's Walking Stick (Corylus avellana 'Contorta')

Planted a small one about 3 feet years ago in a sunny location, but soil was too dry. Almost looked diseased. Moved it to am area with more consistently damp soil, and it has grown fabulously. Now about 6 feet tall and wide. Cut and dried branches make great additions to decorative flower arrangements. In zone 8, the hot and dry summer air of these past few drought-type years has seemed to burn the leaf edges, even when watered well.

Looks more striking in winter without the foliage.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 10:46 AM, concerning plant: Cast-iron Plant (Aspidistra elatior)

These are great plants that can withstand just about anything except ice accumulation on the leaves, which burns the leaves. Snow does not appear to hurt them, other than to weigh them down and break the stalk or the fronds. It is a shade plant in the south. Direct sun will burn the leaves.

Easy to divide. Slow grower. Best left for 3-4 years before dividing. New shoots appear only in spring. Flowers around December, mostly unseen below dirt line. Grows in good to poor soil. Very hardy and drought tolerant to a large degree.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 10:17 AM, concerning plant: Delicata Squash (Cucurbita pepo 'Delicata')

The first time I came across this squash was in the fall of 2014, and it is one of the best tasting winter squashes. Saved seeds and will try to grow some this spring.

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By chuck7701 on Mar 22, 2015 10:06 AM, concerning plant: Common Staghorn Fern (Platycerium bifurcatum)

For a comprehensive review on mounting and dividing very large staghorns, go to this link.

For my next outdoor hanging specimen, I am considering some type of heavy-duty, non-rusting, hanging box-cage type of frame. Will fasten some of my divisions inside the frame structure and just let it grow outward. I won't have to worry about rust, hanging chains, etc., and future plant division will be easier. In my experience, it is best to have a 3-4 chain support for balance and leveling since they will tend to grow lopsided over time.

Will post an image of one to the above mounting link when I build it later this spring. I think an 8-12 inch wide box frame of aluminum or stainless should suffice because I want the fern to encapsulate the frame in a few years, with eye hooks on the corners to easily adjust and secure the chains.

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