Friday

Ixia Viridiflora

Family: Iridaceae (Iris Family)

Common Names: Green Ixia, Groenkalossie, Green Flowered Corn Lily

I stumbled across this beauty on the web. African flower, rare and endangered. - searching for a seed supplier :)

Ixias have been cultivated in Europe since the mid 1700's. Getting material of the true species is difficult and growing them is more challenging. Ixia viridiflora although quick to flower from seed, is not the easiest of the ixias to grow, as it is quick to rot in poorly drained soil. The basic requirements for growing this ixia are: sandy soil with good drainage, a sunny location, and a completely dry, dormant period in summer.
Ixia viridiflora makes an excellent pot plant but is not well suited to a permanent position in the garden, even in winter rainfall areas. They are susceptible to fungal diseases, are eaten by mole rats and porcupines, and need a completely dry summer. To deal with this problem, one can plunge pots of Ixia viridiflora into the garden during the growing and/or flowering period and remove them during the summer dormant period.
Corms should be planted in autumn (April-May) while still dormant. You will need a pot at least 30 cm in diameter. Place a layer of stone chips over the drainage holes and fill three quarters of the pot with a freely-draining soil mix, e.g. equal parts coarse river sand and fine compost (leaf mould). Plant the corms in a 1 cm layer of pure river sand and cover with a 1 cm layer of the soil mix. Water thoroughly immediately after planting and place in a spot that gets at least half-day sun. Once growth becomes visible, a good drenching every ten days is recommended. Because Ixia viridiflora is tall, it may need to be staked if your garden is windy. Inorganic fertilizers should be avoided, particularly high nitrogen fertilizers, but organic fertilizers can be used sparingly. When the leaves begin to dry, stop watering altogether. The corms can be left in the pot, provided it is stored in a cool, dry spot. It is advisable to lift them every second year. This gives you the opportunity to clean them, inspect them for disease and discard the badly damaged ones.

Seed should be sown in autumn (April-May) in a sunny spot, in well-drained medium at a depth of 3-5 mm. Sow thinly and allow good ventilation, otherwise damping off may occur. It is best to use a seed tray that is at least 10 cm deep, or raised seedbeds. Keep the soil moist and germination should occur in three to four weeks. Ixia viridiflora is a rapid grower, and can produce its first flowers only seven months after germinating although most seedlings will flower in their second season. It is best to leave the seedlings undisturbed until after their second season.

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1 comment:

sjp8987 said...

What beautiful flowers! I stumbled upon your blog searching for Puya berteroniana on google. I update mine frequently with garden pictures, if you are interested

http://www.greeneggsandsam8.blogspot.com