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Nigel H-C

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Everything posted by Nigel H-C

  1. Not a rant at all Dennis, all valid points and you highlight the issues faced by us and other societies. If only members were as vocal when it came to article writing as they are on here!!! I remember well the pleas from the chairman of the day for articles for the journal in the '80's and nothing has changed in that respect. Do we really just want to look at photos of Drosera intermedia in every issue? Of course not, but to facilitate change we must do more rather than sit on the sidelines. Which reminds me I have an article on the tuberous Drosera which I need to send in. Come on guys, put pen to paper, even if it's a single page as we all have the occasional triumph which would be of interest to other members. It doesn't have to be a thesis or anything too technical, and of course the most off-putting aspect of writing is thinking that others will think you're stupid. Overcome this perceived threat, as that's what it is, and you'll be fine. Nigel HC
  2. This year marks my 30th as as a member of the CPS, and when I joined the membership was around 250. 30 years on and the membership I heard recently was around 250. Gauge this against the Alpine Garden Society, the RHS, etc and you will see that their membership has grown, in that time considerably. We are a fragile community.
  3. Hi All, I have another offer running on the website until Sunday evening. For a 20% discount add the coupon code showgold2014 in the field on the shopping cart page. The leuco's are starting to look particularly good at the moment!!! www.hccarnivorousplants.co.uk Nigel HC
  4. Yes, you can get a single clone to produce seed. I first managed this a number of years back and the oldest resultant seedling is now around 15 years old. It hinges on when the stigmas are receptive. I wrote an article on this a year or two back which was in the CPN and I think the CPS journal. I have it as a PDF if anyone wants me to send it to them. Nigel HC
  5. Mine are here!!! Opened just the first and it's quite clear it was worth the wait. Well done to Allen and all involved. Nigel HC
  6. Yes, he ran Eco Verdi in the early 90's. Haven't heard that name for years! Nigel HC
  7. Of course the problem here is contained in the two words 'garden centre'. People who have an appreciation of real plants, and not the clonal crap these dreadful places stock, stick with proper nurseries who both care and have the knowledge, rather than some uninterested kid who wants a few hours of employment and cares just as little for the jigsaws and wicker rubbish they also stock. As Paul says, these dismal outlets and their DIY orientated counterparts have and continue to do irrevocable damage to CPs in particular. Nigel H-C
  8. Yes, or alternatively sow in the autumn and they'll germinate when they're ready in the spring, hence removing the involvement of the fridge and any resultant domestic conflict. Nigel HC
  9. I cold stratify dry and its always worked. Put the seeds in small paper envelopes, or those clearish glassine ones-you'll probably find these on ebay for a couple of quid for a million. Avoid plastic zip lock bags as they can cause the seeds to sweat, and that's when you have issues-especially if you are storing long term. Regards Nigel
  10. Hi Matt, The Drosera intermedia, binata, and the Dionaea all need a cold rest period (stratification) before they will germinate. It's a safeguard against germinating in the autumn when the first frosts begin, usually employed by temperate species, carnivorous or otherwise. Ensure they go in the fridge (not the freezer) for six weeks then sow on the surface of some peat. The other Drosera species you can sow now in the same way, and they will germinate in 4-6 weeks. Fly traps are fine in peat anyway, and to be honest you'll get some good results with the Drosera as well. The thing to remember is not to get too worked up about growing these plants, despite their carnivorous habit they're the same as many other species. Regards Nigel HC
  11. Hi Matt, Welcome to this most interesting of hobbies. The issue of compost is a minefield, and one which is guaranteed to both frustrate and confuse those who are just setting out growing these plants. The information you need is straightforward, but unfortunately the answer isn't so clear-cut, and so my advise would be to forget sand at this stage, and use perlite. This, combined with peat (or moorland gold which is peat anyway) will be ideal for most, if not all of your current requirements and with a ratio of around 50:50 will be ideal for Sarracenia, and many Drosera. Although many of us advocate the peat and sand mix for plants such as the Drosera, there are many that will thrive in peat and perlite, and indeed many of the South African species I recommend using peat and sand for, I grow in peat and perlite if that's what I have mixed in the nursery at the time. For Venus Fly Traps, just use straight peat. The problem with sand is that even when the bag states 'lime free', it frequently isn't. A number of years ago, and this demonstrates where even us old timers occasionally cock up, I decided to use a mix for the Sarracenia in the nursery of peat, perlite, and sand. Nothing wrong with this, but like a complete donkey I took the 'lime free' tag line at face value. After a few weeks and once around 500 plants had died, I came to the conclusion that perhaps my decision wasn't a good one. The affected plants had roots burnt off and blackened like aged electrical flex, and the inside surface of the pots wore a malignant dark brown residue. Now the last thing I needed as I approached show season was to have to repot a couple of thousand plants, but sometimes we all need to be taught a lesson. It helps to keep our feet well and truly on the ground, and shows that a good number of years experience doesn't prevent one from buggering up. Currently, I've taken to using a fine Cornish grit, and for me this has been very successful, but as usual the quality varies with supplier. I do hope this helps you in some way, and remember that we all have mixes which we succeed with and therefore swear upon, but there are so many instances where there is no right or wrong answer. Nigel HC God, he's written a bloody essay.
  12. I let mine flower and they're fine. Fred-you're quite right, who starts these rumours? Nigel H-C
  13. Hi All, I've been through and done the first update of the year on the nursery website, adding another batch of new Sarracenia, most of which are location forms. www.hccarnivorousplants.co.uk 10% discount for forum members by inputting the code CPUK2014 in the coupon box onthe first checkout page. Nigel HC
  14. Nigel H-C

    Hardy aroids

    I've had Colocasia formosana outside in the ground for the past couple of winters, and even had C. esculenta survive in the pond last winter. Don't know if it's survived this year yet. I've just ordered C. gaoligongensis which is supposed to be the hardiest species-we shall see! Also have a couple of Remusatia species which I leave outside and lift into one of the greenhouses for the winter. Nigel HC
  15. At least it's not some or other tissue culture cock up! Nigel HC
  16. Exactly Richard. Please stop this nonsense. Nigel HC
  17. Mine's just arrived. Seems I was correct! Nigel HC
  18. No Steve, you're quite right. The whole purpose of cultivar status is to preserve individual genetic integrity of an outstanding plant, not to allow discoverers of garden centre rejects a platform for making a name for themselves. Nigel HC
  19. Hi Paul, It's because of the large subsidies offered to the growers by the Dutch government, which over the years has enabled them to sew up the market both in Europe and beyond. It must be worthwhile judging by the huge number of nurseries you see as soon as you get off of the boat that go on for acres. Nigel HC
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