I have just flowered my Biarum spuneri for the first time.
Sown from seed in Feb.'93 it has taken 4 years of healthy growing
before this happy event. Flowering on the soil surface with leaves
just emerging it really is a 'cutey'. It has a very strong but
interesting perfume reminiscent of fermenting figs or wine.
It is autumn here way down south and always early starters are the
Biarums and Arums creticum, pictum and nickelii . Zantedeschias
elliottiana, rehmanii and albomaculata are declining in preparation
for their winter rest whilst the Dracunculus and Helicodiceros tubers
are sending out roots in anticipation of some autumn rain.
Autumn has brought a cool change from 'the summer from hell' and I am sure I
can hear the plants sighing with relief. Still our hot, dry summer is
probably what made the Biarum flower !
I am preparing a new aroid bed in our teaching garden at the moment.
I am digging in piles of beautiful compost obtained from our Zoology
departments free-range animal reserve on campus. The compost has been
rotting down for about 6 years and is full of lucerne hay and
kangaroo-poo ( or is it possum pibbles, koala krap !! )
It will sure make the aroids 'hop' to it when they get their roots
What do you northeners use in your compost heaps ? Moose-manure ?
Racoon-raisins ? or maybe even Deer- doooos.
Now I have lowered the tone of the conversation I'll go.
Rob (temperate zone 9 /10 Melbourne. Australia )
Dept.of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
Monash University, Clayton 3168
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