Growing Pains: My new heuffelii is blooming!

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Growing Pains

By valleylynn
January 1, 2010

A plant clinic for Sempervivum, Jovibarba and J. heuffelii. This is a companion article for the Sempervivum and Jovibarba forum.

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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Jul 8, 2011 8:22 PM CST
I am so bummed. My new Gommerina is blooming. There's another rosette, it looks like it won't bloom. Hopefully it will settle in and start dividing.
Thumb of 2011-07-09/valleylynn/6adfea

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
twitcher
Jul 8, 2011 10:24 PM CST
Lynn, That's why I no longer (well, almost no longer) divide my heuff's into anything smaller that a 2 rosette clump. I learned last year that (so it seems) the process of dividing heuffelii seems to trigger early blooming in rosettes. My hypothesis is that there is an evolutionary advantage to each clump of heuffelii blooming each year. Since every rosette in a clump share a common root, the clump flowers a single rosette of the clump to create and spread seed, and the clump survives, even if that rosette dies. You might want to think of a heuffelii clump of rosettes as a single plant that flowers, but only produces a single flower. So far, I have not seen more than a single bloom stalk on my smaller clumps of heuffelii. Now if each clump is programmed to usually bloom each year, then you have a problem with a divided heuffelii that has only a single rosette as the new clump. Of course, not every clump or heuffelii plant necessarily flowers.

I have seen so many heuffelii divisions run into blooming shortly after being divided. I lost a number of new types from trades last year when the single rosette cuttings flowered and died. I did have one root survive through the winter and produce an additional rosette this year.

So I now try to always divide a clump into 2 rosettes per division and ask the people I trade with for heuffelii to do the same thing if they can. You'd be surprised to see how many double rosettes bloomed on one of the pairs after dividing.

So that's my hypothesis. I need some more experience with heuffelii's in general to see how well it holds up. I'm relatively new to growing heuffelii's myself, having only started with them a few years back. I do have a couple of larger clumps, but so far I have only seen a single rosette bloom in a clump. Anybody see more than one flower stalk in a heuffelli clump so far?

Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Jul 8, 2011 11:15 PM CST
Not me. I had two bloom last year, but as you said, it was just on the one rosette. I have several blooming this year. I will have to go out in the morning and check out your hypothesis.
Twit I am going to move this over to Growing Pains so we won't lose it in the thread pages.

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