Native Region: Coastal canyons of California
Romneya coulteri (pre treated)
Zone Range: 7-10
Preferred Climate: Full to semi sun; well draining humus/sand/gritty soils.
Harvest Date: Friday 08 February, 2013
Seed count: 40-50
From pleated white silk flowers wafts a citrus/apricot perfume from May to July. The huge 15cm blooms adorn the stiff sub-shrub branches from May to July. The orange boss of stamens are highly attractive to bees providing a bounty of pollen and nectar. Grayish blue-green lobed cut leaves resemble those of a tree peony. When happy it is semi-woody with stems reaching over 2 meters in height and width and will slowly spread via runners. The trick in growing this beauty is sharp drainage and full sun. Over watering this plant will kill it and its recommended not to water after April to mimic its native California environment.
We're going to grow a heap of these, so I've pretreated the seed via scarification (sharp silica sand) and 8 minute cool conifer smoke. All you need now is to give cold stratification followed by Skookum Grow mistings under lights at 20C. Seed starts to germinate in 7-14 days. We're hoping for the 90% rate as achieved in a germination study.
See 'Notes' above. If you don't have pretreated seed and still want 90% germination, you must do this in sequence..scarify, smoke, mist (some growers suggest a germination enhancer such as GA3) and light. Scarify using a small quantity of sand by rubbing seed/sand mix between your hands for half a minute. A catch plate recovers any material that should fall. Place scarified seed/sand mix in a dry coffee filter and make a small pouch so you can hold it above smoking wood (pine is good). Seed requires smoke (not heat) for 5-8 minutes. Surface sow using a well draining medium. Seed needs light. Don't let seedlings dry out plastic cover is good but don't EVER over water. Best if started in plugs or small pots as this species detests root disturbance via pricking out so thinly sow for good robust non congested seedlings. Baggie sowing with barely moist coarse sand (don't use vermiculite) only to provide 1-4 weeks of cold stratification before sowing to grow also increases the germination rate.