There are few plants in the spring garden with more unique, three-dimensional foliage than the hardy aroid, Helicodiceros muscivorus or pig-butt arum. Pig-butt arum emerges in late winter, and will flower in another couple of weeks before going dormant in late spring. Hot, sunny sites for at least half a day are best. Flower photos will be forthcoming in a couple of weeks.
Here’s an odd one from the garden…the unique Solomon’s seal, Polygonatum ‘Koryu’. Each leaf is adorned with a central raised dragon ridge, giving the leaf an interesting multi-colored appearance. Like most of the Solomon’s seals, this one is very easy to grow in moist to dry woodland soils, although very deep shade slows down the growth too much.
Here’s another gem from Taiwan flowering in the garden today, Podophyllum pleianthum…one of the many great Chinese mayapples. Moist to average soil moisture, and compost-rich soils grow the largest plants. Unlike the US native mayapple, these don’t run or go summer dormant.
Here’s a photo of our Rohdea chinensis var. chinensis from Taiwan, flowering in the garden today. The flowers open greenish white and quickly change to this lovely soft orange. The unique floral fragrance is sort of fruit/alcoholic…hardy to really describe. The evergreen rohdeas prefer light woodland shade and average to moist soils.
It was great to finally see Trillium viridescens in the wild, although due to the cold spring, only a couple of plants were beginning to flower. These also grew in floodplains, where they were unfortunately being devastated by the excessive deer populations…a problems that must be addressed before we loose more valuable plant populations. I hope you’ve enjoyed the quick adventure recap.