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Echium On The Move

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by andrews, May 3, 2019.

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  1. andrews

    andrews Super Gardener

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    Now in its third year, this echium has decided that its time to flower.

    The growth rate of the spike is impressive.

    Thought Id start a weekly photo post of its progress.

    Its now about 5 feet tall and the flower buds are starting to form.

    We have a wildpretii that should do the same this year - will add pics if that takes off

    IMG_4086.jpg
     
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    • roders

      roders Total Gardener

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      WOW Andrews that is mighty impressive.
      He is definitely frost hardy , look forward to seeing progress.
       
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      • andrews

        andrews Super Gardener

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        I think its happy due to being on free draining soil. We've given them no winter protection
         
      • Verdun

        Verdun Passionate gardener

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        Echiums often grow in excess of 15’ down here....ubiquitous esp in the far south west. They can be slow in their first year or so but then suddenly send up those tall spires to flower and then they will die :)
         
      • Purple Streaks

        Purple Streaks Apprentice Gardener

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        How did you get this triffid of a plant to last three years????
        I only managed the first year of the rosette stage ,then the second year it flowered .the winter It was wrapped in fleece through winter but still I lost it !
         
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        • Verdun

          Verdun Passionate gardener

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          ......it dies after flowering Purple Streaks (monocarpic) :) It can take 2 or 3 years, maybe 4, to grow but the year it flowers it’s all over
           
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          • andrews

            andrews Super Gardener

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            I haven't protected these at all which frustrates my friend who gave us the plant. He cant get them through the winter. I think its the free draining soil that helps

            Edit : And yes, they are monocarpic and don't like to be moved. I have sown more this year and will continue the cycle next year so that I can hopefully have echiums in flower every year
             
          • Verdun

            Verdun Passionate gardener

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            Yes Andrews, that’s exactly the way to do it. :) They seed like mad down here :)
             
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            • pete

              pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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              I find them variable, often its the damp combined with frost that rots out the growing point.
              Minus 5 seems to be the point where damage occurs, especially if its very wet, the hairy nature of the plant holds the moisture.

              I've had some killed and some survive in the same winter, so I sometimes wonder if hardiness is actually bred into some plants or maybe its about positioning.

              I'm mostly referring to E. pinianana and its hybrids.:smile:
               
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              • Perki

                Perki Super Gardener

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                Impressive Andrews :blue thumb: I am trying to grow Wildpreti as well from seed but it doesn't look like they are going to germinate, I've still got some seeds so will try again, how do you go about germinating them? Saw some last week at Harrogate and were tempted to get some plants but with being on the bike I have to restrict my spending / plants.
                 
              • andrews

                andrews Super Gardener

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                This year Ive grown red bugloss and pink fountain. Sowed them on seed compost with a thin covering of compost and they have germinated really well. Sown and germinated in April on the heated bed. I had clear covers over the seed trays for the first week or two.

                I'd try sowing some of your remaining seed.

                Edit : The wildpretii seems to be multi -headed. No idea what that will do when it decides to put a spurt on.
                 
              • andrews

                andrews Super Gardener

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                A bit of an update. Wildpretti isn't reaching for the sky but is flowering

                This one is looking more like it...

                IMG_4121.jpg
                 
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                • andrews

                  andrews Super Gardener

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                  Thought I'd put up a pic of wildpretii. 3 years of nurturing and I get this. Not quite as expected and pretty underwhelming. Hopefully I'll he able to harvest plenty of seed for next years seedlings


                  IMG_4125.jpg
                   
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                  • pete

                    pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                    I've seen others do that, I have a three yr old pininana, that's a bit taller but multi headed.

                    it's usually due to the top rotting out during the winter.

                    Wildpretii is a bit more tender, I think, and hairier, they dont like dampness collecting in the crown in the winter.

                    Not massive by any means but they do well in large pots, this was last May.
                    DSC_0053.JPG

                    You can start the seed off as soon as its ripe, about late July, gives you a good start for next year.
                     
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                    • CarolineL

                      CarolineL Super Gardener

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                      @andrews you may be disappointed by your wildprettii but what about those eremurus behind!!! I always managed to kill them. Are they another that does better in really free draining soil? I'm impressed by everybody's echiums anyway - I shall have to try them.
                       
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