Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Caladium and the seed pod

I purchased some Caladium bulbs last spring, when I saw that they would grow well in the shade. I have a small patch right outside my front door that has a big Olive tree growing in the middle and I "try" and grow things under its branches which has proven to be a bit of a struggle-as not much sun gets through to the area.

Well I have happily watched the bright green and almost pink red leaves sprout up on a regular basis, but yesterday I was surprised to see a strange pod like structure growing up from one of the bunches of leaves. I did some online research and found it was a seed pod, and that if I wanted to encourage more leaf growth, I should cut it off at the base! On the other hand, if I let it dry on the plant, and harvest the seeds and grow them, I could possibly see some interesting variations in color from the parent. Oh the dilemma!
Although these bulbs are not hardy to our low temps of 25 or so, I think they will be worth the trouble of digging up and replanting next year- I have to fill this bed in with something!

Other surprises in the garden recently were little mushrooms on impossibly thin stalks- they didn't last when the sun came out but they were tall and valiant early in the morning.

Also the busy bee- he discovered the new flowers the Cholla put out after the rain- they hadn't even completely opened up yet, so the stamen were still hidden inside and he really had to work to get what he was after! Click on the pictures to really see the detail.


MrBrownThumb said...

I have that calladium growing too. They're barely peeking out of the soil now but I'm going to keep my fingers crossed that mine behave like yours.

Dee said...

good luck with yours- I ended up snipping the seed pod off after reading how difficult it was to actually get good seeds from them! It does seem to be putting more into leaf production now too!
One thing I have found with mine is that all of the white and lighter colored leaves, die soon after coming up, but the darker red and green leaves are strong and sturdy!