Saturday, October 2, 2010

Seemannia nematanthodes

This little charmer, Seemannia nematanthodes,  began blooming this week. It’s worth having for the brilliance and grace of the flowers: notice the fine hairs which cloak the flower and the thin, arching stem of the bloom. And there is also this: it’s a gesneriad, and it’s said to be marginally hardy in this area. I expect that it will do well against a wall on the sunny side of the house, but I’m frankly dubious of success in the open garden. It's named for the resemblance of its flowers to those of members of the goldfish flower genus, Nematanthus.

The plant you see here came from Woodlanders and is evidently clonally distinct from the more widely grown clone named 'Evita'.


This is one of the several gesneriads I’m considering for use as rock garden plants. It’s easy enough to dig them and store them inside for the winter, but the real goal is to raise hardier seedlings which have potential to become real garden plants.

If there are still hummingbirds around, they will no doubt be glad to find these flowers.

2 comments:

John Boggan said...

I corresponded with Woodlanders a year or two ago about what they were offering as Achimenes heterophylla. It turns out it was actually Seemannia nematanthodes and presumably the clone you're growing. They've had it for many years, apparently longer than 'Evita' has been around so I think you're right that they are two different clones. I've grown both and they are only slightly different, but it's possible that 'Evita' is hardier than the other clone.

John Boggan said...

I corresponded with Woodlanders a year or two ago about what they were offering as Achimenes heterophylla. It turns out it was actually Seemannia nematanthodes and presumably the clone you're growing. They've had it for many years, apparently longer than 'Evita' has been around so I think you're right that they are two different clones. I've grown both and they are only slightly different, but it's possible that 'Evita' is hardier than the other clone.