Six on Saturday: Questions

26 thoughts on “Six on Saturday: Questions”

  1. As always, gorgeous photos TUF. Do you have a special camera? I would call the flowers in number 2 jonquils, but I might be completely wrong. I’m still learning a lot about plants.

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  2. Peas don’t do a lot of branching. The number of pods per stalk will depend upon the variety and weather, but 4 plants won’t give many peas. Jim Crockett of the famed “Victory Garden” series and book always said to sow peas thickly in a band, so that’s what I’ve always done, rather than single peas in a row. The bulbs look like an allium to me, but I could be mistaken. Tulip bulbs flower when they get mature enough, so baby bulbs don’t produce baby flowers. Sometimes the flowers get smaller if there is overcrowding or insufficient nutrients, or too much shade.

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    1. Thanks for the tips, I think I will end up planting more seeds but I only received a few from HSL so I didn’t want to chance losing all the plants at once. I guess I will find out if the mystery bulb flowers

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  3. Very beautiful pictures and the last is my favorite … a blueberry called “pink lemonade” gives many promises! Promise of different color and perhaps promise of a sweeter taste? ! Wait for summer now

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  4. Six, well five, questions on Saturday. Let’s have a go. Can’t help with peas, sorry. Jonquils (Narcissus jonquilla) are technically a specific variety of Narcissus. The distinctive difference between them and other Narcissi is that their leaves are tubular, rather than flat. But “jonquils” is often used as the name for any small narcissi which produce several flowers on each stem as true Jonquils do. Identifying the specific flower is, as you say, a Googling impossibility.

    Hellebores propagated from seed will rarely come true to the parent plant so what you end up with will be a mystery until you get a flower, which may take up to 4 or 5 years. You can also propagate by division which will produce a plant identical to the parent. Sometimes if you look between the stems at soil level you will see baby plants starting to emerge. If you want to try division, Google “propagating Hellebores by division” for hopefully detailed instructions.

    Your mystery bulbs will be a mystery until they flower but something echoing in my cerebral void is saying onion family so possibly alliums of some sort. If you can, get at a bulb and carefully scrape it with a fingernail then sniff the nail and if there’s a scent of onion you have an answer. Or you could break off a bit of leaf and crush it and smell that.

    The size of tulip flowers is really down to the variety, not the size of the bulb. Rather it’s a case that the bigger bulbs will flower better. So dwarf tulips will essentially remain dwarf tulips. They can get taller over time but you won’t see much difference in the size of the actual flowers. Bulblets that flower in their first year may, in that year, produce poor-looking and/or smaller flowers because there isn’t enough energy in the bulb to sustain a big plant and they should reach their normal flower size in the second year if treated right.

    Hope that all helps.

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  5. I gave up with peas as I never seemed to get a good crop, no matter how many I sowed. Sorry. I would say Narcissus, possibly Silver Chimes. Then definitely in the Allium family for four, hard to say what though.

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  6. Lovely photos. I reckon an allium for the mystery bulb. I leave my hellebores to do their own thing – they’re very promiscuous! I leave the seeds to drop then thin the seedlings the following year. When they flower the following year I start to select by colour. I’ve ended up with white, white spotted, pink plain and spotted. They can then be moved, they sulk a bit but it’s a very easy way to increase the stock

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  7. Your mystery bulb looks like an allium. Yes, tulips can produce bulblets off the side, which may bulk up. Many tulips decline in my clay soil: the first year they are wonderful, second ok, then third year a bit sparse. Some do stay or even increase – the species tulips are best, and viridifloras, and for some reason ‘Ballerina’ and ‘Brown Sugar’. Your narcissus look a little like ‘Pueblo’ but I think are too yellow, so not sure. There are lots of lovely multi-headed varieties.

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    1. Most people are saying Allium and upon googling I think they are right – it is hard to google white round bulb and find out what it is so asking people (vs machine) seems to be the winner. Pueblo looks a little pale compared to mine – but then they also look like silver chimes that Tim Hewitt suggested so who knows. I will have to go back to the nursery and ask what they sold last year that looks like my flowers.
      The tulips I have planted in clay soil aren’t doing so well so I might dig them up at the end of the year and amend the soil before replanting. The picture is definitely a tulip bulblet cos they are in a pot so I know that I removed the main ones from the pot last year. Hopefully next year they have enough energy to do better.

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  8. I am no pea expert but I am planting two per cane around an 8 cane wigwam. Plus i have 4 spare that I’ll tuck in somewhere. The peas.for the second wigwam will be sown in a couple of weeks. I sow in pots or root trainers then plant out when they are about 6 inches high. Peas are a pain in the arse crop-wise especially if you have limited space like I do. I’m planting more densely this year in the hope of a better crop…

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    1. I have done the same this year – root trainers in the form of toilet rolls and plant out when six inches or so (same with sweet peas) Maybe this year I will grow for seed and then I won’t have to worry next year about being tight with seeds.

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  9. I have to disagree with Mr Propagator on this one – I think peas are great! They’re easy to grow and because they grow vertically don’t need much space. Its shelling them that’s a faff, so I always grow snap or mangetout varieties that are eaten pods and all. They need spacing about 15cm apart so even in an average size (40cm) container you can grow 4 or 5 up a tepee of canes. I would plant as many as you have space for given that sort of spacing. Pinching the tops can produce a few extra side shoots but they don’t spread out over a trellis.
    The bulbs certainly look just like the alliums growing in my garden, so fairly sure of that one.
    I find tulips will flower when they are ready, the flowers the same size but if growing conditions have been difficult they may be slightly stunted, i.e. the same size flower but on a shorter stem. Would make sense if they haven’t grown as much as normal by the time it should flower – I don’t know if this is botanically accurate but mine are budding now but looking much shorter than usual. I’m putting it down to the extremely cold weather that must have slowed growth right down for most of March.

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    1. Thanks for the advice, I am going to plant a few more and will pinch the tops of the peas when they reach the top of the trellis.
      The tulips are all late this year as will all the bulbs in my garden due to the snow I would say. Last year all the bulbs were done by March. I think it has been hard on them this year.

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  10. Thank you for all the advice and suggestions for my six on saturday. I think the mystery bulbs are indeed Alliums as they do smell like onions. I am surprised I didn’t think of that when searching. I will post a picture if I get flowers eventually; although this year does not seem to be a good one of any of my bulbs.

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  11. I’m late to the party & have nothing to add, except that you generated a lovely discussion w/your questions. I’d forgotten about the existence of the word ‘jonquils’ since emigrating -a word bandied about in the mountains all the time – now I know its proper use. I was also going to grow my peas up a wire boundary fence, but may consider making wigwams after hearing what others are doing. Or maybe not. Now I have to think about pink blueberries . . .

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    1. Thanks, never too late for discussions. I grow things just for the fun of it and these peas are purple flower/pods so they will look fun even if I don’t grow many plants. Wigwams always look cool if you have the room but my beds are quite small so I use the side to save space

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