Sunday, August 6, 2017

Crocus harveyii

At one of our meetings Otto mentioned that a new Crocus had been named after Marcus Harvey, Crocus harveyii. So I decided to try to find out more about this Crocus because now we have 2 Crocus spiecies named after 2 Australian bulb men. Quite unusual considering we have no Crocus species native to Australia and we are a long way from Europe, and Crocus plants are usually named after people from that area. Hopefully we will all be growing Crocus fauseri and Crocus harveyii in our gardens one day.
Otto forwarded Susan's blog so that I could read about Crocus harveyii. 

Exert from Susan's blog.
"Marcus and I went to Ikaria in 2012 specifically to collect Galanthus ikariae seed. We combed the island, up hill and down dale, for a couple of days, finally finding a large patch of Galanthus that had just suffered a massive hailstorm. To our disappointment we found hardly any Galanthus seed, maybe a bad year for pollination. 
On the way back over the mountain ridge we stopped to hunt for that Crocus biflorus ssp. nubigena as Janis had specifically asked Marcus about it when he knew we were going to Ikaria.  We found a reasonable quantity and Marcus immediately posted a portion of the seed off to Janis -- 5 years later Janis announced it as a new species, Crocus harveyii. Strange to think when we were scrambling around on that ridge in Ikaria, a small delightful Greek Island collecting the seed, we had no idea that 5 years later it would carry Marcus's name."

Crocus harveyii flowers February-March.
From Greece Ikaria Island, Plagia Pass growing on sandy-stoney schistose ground with low shrubs.

Photo's curtousy of Janis Ruksans and Habitat photo Susan Jarick.
Mostly thank you to Susan Jarick for allowing us to publish the above.
Full article by Janis Ruksans on International Rock Gardener ISSN 2053-7557
No 90 The Scottish Rock Garden Club  June 2017.

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