About Good Scents

The cut flower business ended in 2011 but I continue to post other items about gardening.

Saturday, February 5, 2011


I had a fairly big die-off of delphiniums this past summer. For the past couple years I planted 'Aurora', one of the varieties I have long used, plus some seeds from Dowdeswell Delphiniums. The Dowdeswell varieties are beautiful and unique but don't seem to hold up as well though our hot and humid summers. I assume it was the summers because I have read delphiniums are super cold hardy and all the delphiniums were treated the same, so I don't think it was a difference in cultural treatment.

In previous years, in addition to 'Aurora', I have grown 'Clear Springs'. However, this year it was dropped from the GeoSeed catalog so I am instead growing 'Magic Fountains'. 'Magic Fountains' is an older strain, kind of a dwarf 'Pacific Giants'. There are more separate colors available than in 'Clear Springs', and you can get white and dark bees, which is kind of cool. So why haven't I grown them in the past? I think I had the impression that 'Magic Fountains' was maybe a little too short, plus I always had such good success with 'Clear Springs' that I had little incentive to try something different.

In addition to the Delphinium cultorum 'Aurora' and 'Magic Fountains', I am also starting some Delphinium belladonna 'Oriental Blue'. I grew this a couple years ago but unlike the other Delphinium belladonna I had grown, most of them died after the first year. They bloomed at the same time as Clarkia and looked really nice with them, so hopefully I will have that pairing again this year.

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