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Re: Pot Culture (no, it's not what you think!)

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: Re: Pot Culture (no, it's not what you think!)
  • From: Sharon McAllister <73372.1745@compuserve.com>
  • Date: Sat, 21 Feb 1998 10:26:13 -0700 (MST)

Diana Louis wrote:

>  Sharon, When should these ones be planted. Problem is if the ground
>  is frozen hard I guess I could put them into pots but I am not
>  enthusiastic about this because the house is so dry in the winter.
>  The question is when do these ones become undormant? =

They seem to respond to a change
in the weather.  Here, they usually
break dormancy in September, although
if the summer is cool it can happen in
August.  That's roughly two months before
we have a killing frost.  When we listed
arils in our catalog, we shipped them at
whatever time the customer requested,
starting in July.  =

Rhizomes shipped from south to north
tend to go ahead and break dormancy
at the appropriate time for their new home.
The problems I alluded to affect  rhizomes
shipped from north to south.  =

The question is:  What is the best planting
time for your climate, and how do you
get rhizomes that are ready to plant then?

Transplanting is easy, if you don't dig
all of your arils every year.  Just go ahead
and dig the ones you want to move =

anytime after they've gone dormant.
Replant them when the mature clumps
you've left in the ground have broken
dormancy.  =

If your climate is cold enough that your
arils don't go completely dormant --
count yourself lucky.  You can move them
at any time as long as you don't tear off
their feeder roots or leave them out of the
ground long enough to trigger dormancy.

If you obtain arils from a commercial =

source, you can usually request July
shipment.  Often just the shock of =

transition to a cooler climate will bring
them out of dormancy and they can be
planted almost immediately.

I used to store rhizomes imported from
Israel in cardboard flats in an out-of-the-way
place, checking them weekly and planting
when they broke dormancy.  Amazing, but
the whole shipment tended to 'pop' their
calluses within a few days of each other.

But don't be concerned if you have to over-
winter arils indoors the first year.  They are
accustomed to low relative humidity -- below
20%.  If humans can take it, they can!

Sharon McAllister

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