Trees and Shrubs forum: Calycanthus floridus 'Michael Lindsey'

Views: 2333, Replies: 11 » Jump to the end
Name: Jacquie (JB) Berger
Wrightstown, New Jersey (Zone 6b)

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Region: New Jersey Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
Container Gardener Hummingbirder Farmer Keeps Horses Dog Lover Birds
Image
JB
Jul 20, 2011 11:38 AM CST
When I was very young the family all lived together because my grandfather owned, operated and published a weekly small town newspaper. Everyone worked for the paper either full or part time. It did not seem unusual back then for everyone to live together. We had a Winter home and a Summer Home and the summer home is where I learned to love plants, shrubs and playing in the dirt.

At the summer home we had a gigantic shrub that when it bloomed it had a gorgeous fragrance. Everyday my grandmother would send me out to the far garden where the shrub was to pick her one or two flowers for her to tie in the corner of her linen handkerchief. She did not use perfume as women do today. (She loved having the scent in her pocket and even in her dresser drawers.) That was a ritual for her. She was a Spanish Lady and never left you forget it. Many years have passed since then and I have tried to find out what the name of that shrub was.
I purchased a Calycanthus raulstonii 'Heritage Wine" and a Calcycanthus floridus "Athens ' (Katherine) and planted them with care. I babied them and waited and this year the Athens bloomed. The blooms were very nice but much to my horror, they had NO odor at all. I wanted to cry. The Katherine which I have since found out has yellow blooms, never did bloom.
I went back to the drawing board and spend hours more research and found that the one I should have purchased was actually the 'Michael Lindsey'. Now I must try and find a place to purchase it. I think I found it locally but my friend who has a wholesale account there has been too busy to go see if it is the one I want. So, that is my story about my Sweet Shrubs. If you have never seen or heard of this shrub, believe me, you need to look into it. What a wonderful shrub to have in your garden. It has so much charm and beauty.
Thumb of 2011-07-20/JB/ae0337
[Last edited by JB - Jul 20, 2011 11:41 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #106231 (1)
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
gemini_sage
Jul 22, 2011 11:35 AM CST
Thank you so much for sharing, Jacquie! Plants that are associated with childhood memories are extra special to me too, they're the ones that are most dear to me. I've never grown Calycanthus, but remember as a youngster catching whiffs of some fruity fragrance while in my grandmother's yard. I finally found that it was coming from a neighbor's Calycanthus- I thought they were so strange and cool!

There is another thread with pics of a cream colored variety that piqued my interest. They're showier, but I'm curious if they have the rich fragrance.
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Jacquie (JB) Berger
Wrightstown, New Jersey (Zone 6b)

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Region: New Jersey Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
Container Gardener Hummingbirder Farmer Keeps Horses Dog Lover Birds
Image
JB
Jul 22, 2011 4:13 PM CST
Gemini, the yellowish cream color one is called the Venus and that is said to be fragrant, but then the people at Hirt told me the one I bought was fragrant too and it was not. They have on their website that the Hartiage Wine Sweet shrub is fragrant....well they are full of manure. The one they sold me has no odor in the flower.The stems if yo crush them have an odor. Look up Pleasant Run Nursery in NJ and they have the yellow one. The Hirt's Garden has the cream color one and they say that is fragrant but I do not believe them. I already found they were wrong about the Hartiage Wine.
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
gemini_sage
Jul 22, 2011 5:12 PM CST
Venus is the one I was thinking of! Here is the thread with a pic of it:

The thread "Calycanthus" in Trees and Shrubs forum
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Jacquie (JB) Berger
Wrightstown, New Jersey (Zone 6b)

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Region: New Jersey Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
Container Gardener Hummingbirder Farmer Keeps Horses Dog Lover Birds
Image
JB
Jul 23, 2011 8:49 AM CST
Neal, Thanks for that thread. Wow, would I live to have those plants. Athens must have a nice fragrance then according to that other thread. Now I am confused.

I tried starting cuttings in water. Did not work. If you can figure how to propagate, please let me know. I am still working on it. Just have not had time to do further research. They are hardy here, so I am really interested in knowing how to propagate. I do not do well with seeds.
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
gemini_sage
Jul 23, 2011 10:22 AM CST
Seems woody cuttings typically take longer to root and will rot in water before they root. With a lot of woody plants I have the best luck layering, just weighing down a branch with a rock or something. I'm not sure if the growth habit of Calacanthus would lend itself to bending branches down though.
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Jacquie (JB) Berger
Wrightstown, New Jersey (Zone 6b)

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Region: New Jersey Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
Container Gardener Hummingbirder Farmer Keeps Horses Dog Lover Birds
Image
JB
Jul 24, 2011 11:36 AM CST
I doubt if the Cal would lend itself to being bent down to layer. I have honestly never tried layering because I grow mostly in containers and I can not figure out how to do it. I would love some suggestions if you have any.
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
gemini_sage
Jul 24, 2011 11:41 AM CST
Well, it may be possible to set another container near the plant, perhaps sat on a stand or pedestal at the right height, where a branch could be secured into the soil. Kinda sounds like a lot of trouble though. Have you tried cuttings in sand or vermiculite?
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Jacquie (JB) Berger
Wrightstown, New Jersey (Zone 6b)

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Region: New Jersey Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
Container Gardener Hummingbirder Farmer Keeps Horses Dog Lover Birds
Image
JB
Jul 24, 2011 12:14 PM CST
Not yet because I really only want to propagate the fragrant ones and I do not have them yet.
I think I was told the ones I purchased were the fragrant ones but they turned out not to be.
So, After the cuttings did nothing on the first try, I decided to wait until later. Michael Lindsey is what I am waiting for.
Name: Val
Ohio (Zone 5b)
Charter ATP Member Cat Lover I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Ohio
Val
Jul 29, 2011 11:12 PM CST
I have Michael Lindsey, Athens, and Venus. I planted them about 5 years ago, I think.

My favorite for scent is Athens. It's a sweet, strong apple scent (maybe sweet, green apple?) that I can detect easily from six feet away. It took a few years to really get to blooming a lot but it was well-worth the wait. It's a little smaller than the other two cultivars but it has a great form. Also, it seems to take drought and alkaline soil just a little better.

We had three Michael Lindsey but this year we took one of them out. It was a healthy, beautiful plant but I wanted something else in that spot. It was a shame that I didn't have anyone to give it to. This is the only cultivar of Calycanthus that has suckered for us so far (I have at least one out there now with suckers). They also have seed pods. The scent is like fermented apple cider and seems to vary by temperature/time of day/year/whatever. It's not a real strong scent like Athens but sometimes I can smell it walking by the bush. I think that Michael is the first one to bloom in the spring.

Venus has the largest flowers and the lightest scent. Most times I can't detect a scent but when I can, it's more of a fruity (pineapple?) scent. I'm not thrilled with the form of this plant. It's too horizontal for me. Maybe that's because I have it planted in more shade than the others. Venus will probably visit the plant heaven in the sky next year. The flowers are pretty when they first open but it just doesn't fit the spot I need to fill.

I have read that even though Calycanthus is fragrant, not all individual plants may be fragrant (even if they are the same cultivar). The fragrance can vary a lot from plant to plant. But I have no way of knowing that from experience. From experience, I can say that they do get more fragrant as they mature. The first year or two with Athens, I thought "Meh". Then the next year, it was "Wow, I love this plant!". It just keeps getting better and better (and more fragrant).
Name: Neal Linville
Winchester, KY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Bulbs Cottage Gardener Roses Irises
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
gemini_sage
Jul 30, 2011 6:35 AM CST
With some plants I think it's a matter of it maturing enough to produce a quantity of blooms that makes a fragrant impact. The first time my night blooming Jasmine bloomed I didn't catch a whiff of scent, but the next year it was double the size and full of blooms and I could smell it from the upstairs bedroom window.
"...and don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous." Rumi
Name: Jacquie (JB) Berger
Wrightstown, New Jersey (Zone 6b)

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Region: New Jersey Cactus and Succulents Tropicals
Container Gardener Hummingbirder Farmer Keeps Horses Dog Lover Birds
Image
JB
Jul 30, 2011 8:15 AM CST
I tried taking some cuttings from the Michael and putting them in water, I think I told you that. It did not work, but I did notice a very nice aroma coming from the cuttings when you scratched them or cut them.
I wonder if the scent of the flowers eventually comes from the stems. Hmmmmm.

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Trees and Shrubs forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Today's site banner is by sunnyvalley and is called "Hair-raising"