Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bessera elegans

What a charmer this one is! And it's easily grown. Give it what in the old days we called "gladiolus culture" : i.e. plant the corms out in a sunny spot after the danger of severe freezes is over, and in the autumn dig the corms and after they are dry pop them into a zip-lock bag and store them inside for the winter. I started with three corms last year; they did not bloom or increase. But this year they are blooming. It's being treated as a pot plant for now: however you grow it, keep in mind that you will want to get close to it to examine it well. The foliage is nothing more than three or four rush-like leaves about eighteen inches long.

I think I first had this about forty years ago from Zephyr Gardens in San Antonio: back then, I thought of it as one of those many Mexican bulbs which at the time seemed so elusive. It's now grown as a field crop in Holland for both the cut-flower and bulb trades.

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