My Tough Tigers

I am being taught a thing or two by my tiger babies which were grown from bulbils.

I wanted to make sure they all survived as I experimented on how to raise them.

I thought the ones in the pot needed to be brought in for the winter, but I forgot.

I assumed that the ones in partial shade would need to be moved in order to bloom.

They are blooming just fine where they lay.

I wanted to protect mama ‘Tiger Splendens’ with a fence, but took it off and forgot to put it back.

That one is fine as well.

I babied them when they were babies. Now that they are grown, they do fine on their own.

Mama FLOW standing down.

Tiger Grandbulbies

I saved the bulbils from my Tiger Lily ‘Splendens’ two years ago.

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I potted them and they grew into tiny little lilies last summer.

This spring I put them in the ground.

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They have grown up tall and are now blooming.

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I find it very satisfying to raise a second generation of special plants.

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Tiger lily ‘Splendens’

I think these are exceptionally beautiful.

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It’s the spots that get me.

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Granny Flow

Tiger Mother

I over-protect and over-expect when it comes to plants and people.

The results are not ideal.

My latest lesson involves my Tiger lilies ‘Splendens’.

Tiger Lilies ‘Splendens’

They were the only plants that bloomed last summer because the deer did not eat them..

I consider them a treasure because of this and their extreme beauty.

I over-protected the bulbs over the winter. I over-babied them all spring.

I finally let the poor little plants out into the garden in July.

They are way behind in growing and blooming.

The bulbils that were collected and planted have also been over-sheltered.

They have barely grown, yet two babies have produced bulbils of their own

which are actually growing roots while still attached.

Sort of reminds me of fast girls with strict mamas.

Will I ever get over the “overs”?

Tiger Mo Flow

 

Saving the Tigers

Some of my plants are too precious to leave their survival to chance.

I put my new Tiger lilies at the top of my precious list.

I know they are supposed to survive in zones 4 through 9.

I am in zone 7, so I should relax and leave them out, but…

Some winters are extremely cold, others are soggy wet.

Our soil is red clay so things rot. I have to put pebbles under plants to ensure drainage.

Why would I risk the only lily the mama deer did not eat?

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These Tigers are the only lilies that came through the “deer delicatessen ” month uneaten.

So both the bulbs and the bulbils are coming in.

I removed the purple bulbils from the stems.

I immediately popped these into some cactus soil in shallow pots and watered them.

Label these babies in the pots.

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Then I removed the yellowed plants from their giant pot.

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I shook the damp soil off the roots.

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I let these dry a few days and then knock off the remaining soil.

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I store them in a cardboard box full of damp vermiculite separated be used packing paper.  Separation prevents the spread of diseases.

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The big, heavy, empty pot will have to stay outside.

Always keep the label with the bulbs.

If you think you will recognized them in the spring,

you are either young or very optimistic.

I always have WTF (What’s This Flower) moments in spring.

Now these Tigers , big and small, will be safe through the winter in my workshop with my hundreds of other precious plants.

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The FLOWER knows she is forgetful and plans accordingly.

FLOWER in the Fall

 

 

The Not Eaten Treasure

I will start this post with a beautiful new flower

that opened for the first time this morning.

It is a ‘Splendens’ Tiger lily, Lilium tigrinums.

It has my two favorite colors peachy/melon orange with plum-colored spots.

I am extra grateful to get to see this bloom this morning.

Hundreds of my other blooms did not have the opportunity to open this morning,

because they were eaten by deer last night.

Have I put my heart in transient treasure?

Twenty-eight years of carefully planning and tending my gardens

to become a high-dollar delicatessen for deer?

My living jewels eaten by marauding mammals.

Is this really how one should invest one’s time, money and energy:

to supply the locals with exotic cuisine, free-of-charge?

I must say the FLOWER is feeling rather foolish.

So today, I will enjoy my treasures that have not been eaten.

I need to love things that are not edible…

like my bunnies.

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FOOL