Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Unfinished business: Tropaeolum, Ardisia

About a week ago, I showed you a bud from my nasturtiums. The buds have opened, though the flowers . . . well, do nasturtium flowers always look so trashed so quickly? This particular one --

--had just been in a pretty serious storm the night before I took the picture, but they're kind of all looking this way. I mean, I haven't been able to find good ones to take pictures of. The above was about as good as they got, though if they had to be of poor quality, at least there were a lot of them.

Also in person they're more of a straightforward pink; I don't know where the orangey-coral hue in the picture came from. It's not my favorite color, either way, and I will probably not do this variety next year, but I'm not ruling out all Tropaeolums just yet. If I'd started them earlier, and pre-soaked the seeds like you're supposed to, it might have worked.

About a month ago, I told y'all about seeing flower buds on the Ardisia ellipticas where I used to work. I didn't get any particularly good pictures of the flowers, but I did get pictures, and they're good enough to show the basic color and structure of the thing. (I'm not sure why the pictures didn't come out better: they were all grainy like this.)

Nothing hugely newsworthy, but also not uninteresting. The next step, of course, is to see whether they'll be allowed to develop into berries, and how long that will take if they are.


Claude said...

That nasturtium looks stressed to me... I don't grow them here, although we did when I lived further north... here, they don't survive our spring much less our summer. It is, however, one of the plants that we can plant in September and have blooming at Christmas. Doesn't really look too comfortable among my agaves though...

sheila said...

We had some petunias at work get that type of damage on the flowers after some bad storms.

I grew some 'Alaska' nasturtiums from seed a few years ago. They were easy (I think I did soak seeds as directed, I always follow directions, ha ha). They have cool variegated foliage, bright orange flowers, and needed very little attention. Maybe try that variety next time?

mr_subjunctive said...

We sold seeds for 'Alaska' and also started some plants from seed at work last spring; they did a little too well and got tangled in one another, so they didn't sell like they should have, but they were nice enough.

As far as it goes, these were nice enough, too. Just not really a color that goes with the other annuals: I need more of a reddish-orange.

lynn'sgarden said...

I grew nasturtiums last year and never liked it's legginess and the flowers DID always looked beat up! I actually like that shade of coral though. Is the greenhouse bloom from the citrus family? Looks similiar but you mentioned berries...? Thanks for popping over and leavin' a comment.

patty said...

I grow these in PA every year, usually between my herbs and veggies since they look nice and are supposedly a pest deterrant/companion plant. They do often look stringy, especially late in the season, and are prone to leaf miners, but i find the overall effect pleasing, and they are tasty in salads! Love the blog by the way, and I would be happy to share cuttings or new starts of plants, I'm a sucker for anything new and interesting too.

mr_subjunctive said...


No, Ardisia is in the Myrsinaceae, which is apparently not a particularly large family and doesn't have much of anything in it that sounds familiar to me outside of the two houseplant species (Ardisia crenata and A. elliptica)


I've thought about trying to organize some kind of round-robin sort of exchange here, or try selling some of my excess plants through PATSP, or something like that, but I have not yet been able to get it together to organize something like that or even figure out how to start organizing something like that. There are a lot of things like that, that seem like good ideas but are so far proving difficult to implement. If I ever do, rest assured that it'll be announced here.