Monday, April 11, 2011

Corydalis solida

Corydalis solida (G.P. Baker, above) is one of my favorite spring flowers. It grows from a bulb, unlike most of the other corydalis that we grow. It comes up at the first hint of spring and in a very short time it is in full bloom. Height is probably about 8-10 inches. The named one above is a lovely rosy red/pink, but over the years we have ended up with lots of variety in the colors like the purple one below.
This grape juice color may be my favorite, but over the years they have self seeded and filled in lots of spaces, much better than I could have done planting them myself, and in every shade of pink, red, purple, lavender and anything in between.
I'm told that they also come in white, but I don't have any of those and the closest we've come is some very pale pinks or lavenders. Above is just a sampling of one part of the gardens at Lake Amanda.

These are considered a spring ephemeral since by the beginning of summer they will have totally disappeared. We plant them in gardens with things like hostas that will hide the bare spots. They are best in shade, at least they will last longer there, but we have them in sunny spots that they have chosen themselves and they seem to do all right there, but go dormant a lot faster. In the wild it is a woodland plant, and so those conditions are preferable. Grows in zones 4-8.

And an update on my last post. The first bloom on the orchid cactus has come out with 3 more to go. Last summer it has 20 something blooms at once. To say it was noticeable would be an understatement.


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