Thursday, August 2, 2018

Clivia - Agapanthus?

Those who know me know that I love Clivia plants. I love the happy orange flowers and the lovely scent. I love that they seem to thrive on some neglect. I love that, at least in the past, they have flowered in the depths of winter a time when flowers are much appreciated. I started with one plant many years ago; with time I've bred my plants and slowly have been able to add a few more to my family. I also have shared some of my seedling plants with friends.

Several years ago I tried growing Agapanthus. They were easy to induce to flower but rather too large for life inside up north in Michigan being better suited for outdoor culture in frost free places like Florida and Southern California I suppose.


Several years ago on a whim I dusted some pollen from one of my Clivias onto the stigmas of Agapanthus flowers. Seeds set. Seedlings germinated. Plants grew, although it took years. They took up limited space. So this spring I decided it was time to liberate them to my yard fully realizing that fall frosts would kill them off. They're only plants - I said to myself.

I planted about ten of them outside under a wild Clematis virginiana where they could have some protection from summer's sun and the rabbits and deer that also share my living spaces. They promptly died back from sunburn and root shock and I've mostly ignored them watering them rarely. What's that line? Something like set it (them) free and if it's meant to be they'll come home. (I know that's not quite right but.) Look closely in the lower left corner and you might be able to find one of the plantlets near Grandpa Ott's morning glory leaves.

Here's a close-up. I would have missed the flowers if the hummingbirds hadn't been dive bombing one another. The leaves are, in my opinion, more like Clivia leaves than Agapanthus leaves although I have limited experience with Agapanthus. Clicking on photos enlarges them.

I don't know if this is a hybrid between an orange Clivia and a blue Agapanthus or if pollen from the Agapanthus was both parents for this several years old, sun-scalded, and scrawny looking seedling. Regardless, It looks like they will be potted fresh and coming inside next winter. Let me know if you'd like to adopt one. Yellow Clivia are rare. (I don't know, obviously, if all the plants will have cream colored flowers. Perhaps the flowers are light colored because they are sun shielded by the Clematis, although that's unlikely, imo.) I don't know if they are fragrant - can't bend over that far - sigh!

No comments: