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Re: SPEC: Moreaea polystachya

From: "Patterson, Dallas" <nye@mail.fidalgo.net>

Yes, the landscapers in Southern California have really latched on to the 
Dietes iridoides for its foilage. They're turning up in parking lot 
landscaping all over the place. Note, the nomenclature for these plants 
is rather confused. What is often sold at the nursery as Moraea bicolor 
is reportedly Dietes bicolor. The Dietes vegeta we purchased at a nursery 
here is supposedly the synonymous Dietes iridoides...and so on.

Some sources are saying the lower temperature range for these plants are 
20 degrees F. and others say 25 degrees, so their hardiness here may be 
rather marginal. However, we're giving it a try to see if we can succeed 
anyway. Monrovia Nurseries is one of the big producers of these landscape 
plants, and I suspect they are being produced in the San Gabriel Valley, 
Los Angeles County, where we used to live. I know that I'm still seeing 
their labels on these plants even up here in Washington.

Being South African natives, Dietes and Moraea prefer a cool-warm 
environment with adequate moisture. Provided you can protect them from 
sub-20s weather, they should do well in the desert. Our potted plants 
performed fair to middlin', so it took planting them into the ground to 
see them perform properly (in Southern California). Here in Washington, 
the plant only half-heartedly produced occassional blooms while in the 
pot. If it survives this winter in the ground, we expect the plant will 
produce a profusion of bloom next year.

Provided this first experiment succeeds, we'll have to find a source for 
some of those other Moraea, like Moraea fugax <g>.

Dallas Patterson
USDA Zone 8
Skagit County, Washington

Slc.Dennis Bishop wrote:
> From: starlord@QNET.COM (Slc.Dennis Bishop)
> >From: "Patterson, Dallas" <nye@mail.fidalgo.net>
> >
> >Dietes bicolor / Moraea bicolor and Dietes iridoides
> I picked up oth of these (I hope) this last summer. the tags on them
> said hardy down to 25F, I'm in zone 8, high desert of calif. and i've
> seen the moraea one used as an everygreen around here around uildings.
> i picked up a 'utterfly' iris which i think is the dietes icolor, ut i
> did ring it inside as it wasn't in a ig pot. I also pulled in my
> walking iris too.
> The Lone Sidewalk Astronomer of Rosamond.
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