opinions wanted from gardeners with more experience of cold winters.

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by theplantman, Mar 5, 2010.

  1. theplantman

    theplantman Gardener

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    As we all know daffodills are the toughest of bulbs, however this year some varieties seem to have been set back by the cold more than other spring bulbs. I first noticed in some planters, tulips, crocus ornithogalum etc all slow as expected, but Narcissus thalia very slow (they would normally be the most advanced apart from the crocus) Similarly in the ground tulips far more advanced than tete-a tete-dafs and Febuary gold dafs.
    Similarly in customers gardens, clients have thought there daffs were dead when I checked, they are coming but again a long way behind other bulbs that you would expect to be less advanced.


    All I can think is the varieties I grow are more susesptable to cold, or that despite being tough they need as little more heat to get going?

    I dont imagine this is a problem Im sure they will catch up when(if) it warms up. Im hoping some gardeners more used to cold winters will be able to shed some light, has anyone experienced/noticed this before?
     
  2. PeterS

    PeterS Total Gardener

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    Hi plantsman. I don't have any answers - except that in Yorkshire - every winter is very cold. :D

    However I am sure that some varieties and plants are tougher than others. I remember reading (possibly from Christopher LLoyd) that the closer plants like Tulips are to the species usually the tougher they are, and the more cultivated the less tough.
     
  3. theplantman

    theplantman Gardener

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    yeah Preter that could well be something to do with, I be lloking to see if other varieties are slow to I think they its the 5th of march and i havnt seen one in the ground in flower yet
     
  4. pete

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

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    I seem to remember when I was a kid daffs flowered in march,but they have been getting earlier in more recent years.
    This year they seem to have reverted to their old ways.
    I'm sure differing varieties flower at different times but I'm talking in general now.

    Its been a bit strange this winter, bearing in mind how mild and wet it was right into December.
    Taking this into account I just wonder if the bulbs started growing early enough last autumn.

    I read a few years ago about a study on Forsythia, it was found that it needed X amount of days below a certain temperature before it could flower.
    Hence in really mild winters the flowering was poor and even late in some cases, flowering at the same time as the foliage was forming.

    Just maybe the Daffs needed a colder Autumn to get the roots going.

    As I remember it, it went from very mild to continuously cold in a matter of days in December.
     
  5. Sussexgardener

    Sussexgardener Gardener

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    I planted new daff bulbs last autumn, October and by late December there were tips starting to show. Still not bloomed though.
     
  6. theplantman

    theplantman Gardener

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    thanks pete, thats exactly the sort of thing I was thinking off, somewhere the trigger has been wrong for daffs but allowed other bulbs to get going, its not something im worried about but very curiouse its an interesting area looking at what triggers things to bloom, grow or go dormant.
     
  7. pete

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

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    I have relatives in Australia who have been know to store daff bulbs in the fridge for a set number of weeks before planting, apparently they wont flower well there without the treatment.

    I could be wrong its just what they told me.:)
     
  8. theplantman

    theplantman Gardener

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    I can well believe it. Its like the stratification of seeds, I recently germinated some eremerus, they needed 3 weeks at 20 0c 6 weeks at 0 then a slow increase, it all sounds very complicated but when you think about what your doing ie replicating summer heat after the seeds fall then the cold of winter then the slow warm up of spring, it all makes sense.
     
  9. sparky

    sparky Gardener

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    Usually miniture daffs and camellias are flowering here this month but so far no sign of colour on them yet Huecheras and pentstemons look as if they've been under cover all winter
     
  10. Makka-Bakka

    Makka-Bakka Gardener

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    .


    This year certainly Snowdrops have flowered much later, it must have been the weather!

    As for Daffodils and their flowering periods, the wild ones in the Forest of Dean flower "about" the same time each season no matter what the winter is like!

    Large flower cultivars, which is what most on here are talking about are a different matter all together,they are bred to bloom at different times, one variety Salome flowers with me about mid April time when all the others have long ago finished flowering.

    The plant people breed for ones that flower, early, mid season and late, more money from cut flowers!

    .
     
  11. theplantman

    theplantman Gardener

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    thanks all ... yes dafs flower at all different times with Narcissus poeticus flowering late may in these parts. However the varieties I grow I have grown for many years. I find it interesting that they are so find behind bulbs they would normally be ahead of, as mentioned above there must be some trigger that did not happen as normal but didnt slow tulips/camassia ets to the same extent, anyone growing tulips and daffs in pots have a check....on the whole your average daf would be miles ahead of your aerage tulip in early march ...but are they?
     
  12. Selleri

    Selleri Super Gardener

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    I was just about to start a new thread... it is indeed a weird daff year. In my raised beds and large bulb containers everything else is coming up but I still haven't seen a wiff of my daffs. I was starting to suspect I bought a faulty batch 2 years ago but this morning I saw the first leaves. Weird, tulips and even alliums overtaking basic sturdy daffs?
     
  13. theplantman

    theplantman Gardener

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    Excellent I am not alone! Where abouts in the country are you?
     
  14. Selleri

    Selleri Super Gardener

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    North Tyneside. Last year my big bulb container was fabulous, I replanted it in the autumn and the daff bulbs looked healthy. This year the old bluebells and the new tulips are already coming up but just the first leaflets of daffs appeared this morning. Same thing with the front garden beds, everything else is normal apart from the daffs.
    Let's wait and see...
     
  15. pete

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

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    I must admit on the strength of this thread I had a look around my garden at the weekend, and its true, even the small earlish daffs that I have on my rockery are not showing any sign of flowering, but tulips are up and probably only a week or two later than normal.
    I think I may even get hyacinths in flower before daffs the way it looks at the moment.

    Of course given a nice warm week, (we should be so lucky), it may all just sort its self out and everything will flower at once.
     
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