From: Steve Marak <samarak at arachne.uark.edu> on 1997.10.01 at 20:47:16(1366)|
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Sender: Fausto Ceni
Subject: Re: Helicodiceros muscivorus
Doug Burdic wrote:
> Hi All,
> I was wondering if anybody out there has had any luck growing
> Helicodiceros muscivorus or knows of any sources for this plant. Like
> Dracunculus, it is native to Corsica and Sardinia; very hard to
> duplicate this Mediterranean climate in culture unless you live in
> Southern California, or have a climate controlled greenhouse it seems.
> I have a few, but as winter approaches, I am beginning to get paranoid
> about losing them to the elements in my 'cold frame' greenhouse here on
> the central Oregon coast. Mine plants never did that well this growing
> season and would be interested in learning the cultural conditions that
> other growers of Helicodiceros are using.
I have collected H. muscivorus in north Sardinia and I can describe to
how it grows.
The place is 30 m far from the sea, the ground is sand and earth
deriving from the decay
of rosa granite. Nevertheless I think that the plants don't need acidic
soil or sea salt.
The plants are in the open shadow of rocks or of Pistacia lentiscus
shrubs; the climate
is indeed a tipical mediterranean one: about 500mm rain distributed from
may, temperature 2°- 10° in the winter. The summer is dry, without rain
from end june
to mid september, with temp. 20°C to 30°C.
In this place the plant comes out from the earth at mid january or
beginning of februar, when
the temperature is above 10-12°C at day and blooms by mid April to mid
In this station, where there are may be one hundred plants, I have never
had the luck to found fruits
althought the rest of the inflorescences are full of hundreds of flies.
At the end of may the leaves are yellow and in june dry.
I have seven plants, but they blooms alternate and not every years. For
the first time
this year I had an inflorescence full of fruits, that I have
You should not found haevy difficulties growing this plant: store the
pot in a place
with a temperature over 2°C in the winter and then, in march store it in
your cold glass house
or in a very protected place. You should give water from october till
may. I think that the tuber begins to absorb water, in winter, waiting
for a good temperature.
This is not a typical bahaviour for mediterranean geophyte plants: they
winter grower, beginning with the first rain; this plants begins the
grows later and the growing time is shorter as the other mediterranean
geophytes: it is an interesting occurrence.
Let no rain and no water from june till september, storing the pot in a
place with more as 20°C in the summer
( I store at 25-27°)
This year I have had unfortunately a not yet understood pest: two tubers
had an hole and I have little hope to save them: I think an insect
penetrated in may in the hole of the stem.
Good luck in growing your plants !!!!
You should forgive me for my terrible english.
Dr. Ing. Fausto CENI - Via Marsala 8 I-25122 BRESCIA (ITALY)
Tf ++39 30 3756011 - Fax ++39 30 42435