Some like it wet

Many bulbs have evolved in hot, dry climates. They wait for spring or autumn rains to begin growth, then flower and set seed before conditions become hostile again. A few, such as our native fritillaria melegaris, enjoy moister growing conditions. Another member of the same family, fritillaria reuteri, revels in wet spots. Here it is, growing in a muddy steam in Iran, and flowering in early April.

12 - fritillaria reuteri - Copy

So this permanent moisture is what I am trying to replicate. Living in southern Britain, we get more dry summers than wet ones, so a bit of lateral thinking is required. Last autumn, I planted a bulb in a Long Tom flower pot, and placed it on a brick platform in the edge of my pond so that the bottom couple of inches were in the water. A couple of weeks ago, this happened:

Fritillaria reuteri - 2018

I love it when an experiment is successful.



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