Mid Atlantic Gardening forum: Need help from Marylanders

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Name: Kabby
Lowndesboro, AL (Zone 8a)
Region: United States of America Region: Alabama Bookworm Echinacea Dog Lover Seed Starter
Plant and/or Seed Trader Butterflies Hummingbirder Birds Tropicals Bulbs
Aug 27, 2016 4:54 AM CST
I will be visiting a friend in Huntingtown MD next month and I want to bring some plants to share with her. I have looked up hardiness zones and come up with zones 7a, 7b, and also just plain old 7. I will be bringing old standbys like daylilies and iris but I also have tropicals that I would like to bring her. I'm interested in your experiences about overwintering some of these plants outside.
Cannas, hedychium gingers, Colocasia, crinum, maybe a basjoo banana one day. I've read that Ellen Bosanquet crinum is hardy there.
Any experiences are welcome and any help is not just limited to MD. Thank You!
Name: Gita Veskimets
Baltimore or Nottingham MD-212 (Zone 7a)
Life is "mind over matter". If I d
Aug 27, 2016 7:10 AM CST
Kabby--Other than the cannas--I believe all the rest of the plants you listed are tropical.

The only plant i can advise you on are cannas--in at least what I do.....
At least from my experience--When real cold or a light frost comes--
Cannas need to be allowed to have their leaves lightly frost-nipped. The leaves will be all limp.
Cut them all back--leaving ~ 8"stem-bundle sticking up. This will help as a "handle" to lift the roots up.

Wait about 2 more weeks and then dig the whole root mass up. be careful!
You can, gently, try to knock some of the lg. clumps of soil off--BUT--be careful--as the new pips
are quite fragile and tender at this time and can be broken off.
***Allow the roots to dry. Spread on some newspaper on a mild, breezy day to do this.
Roots need to be dry before you store them--or they will rot in a cool basement.

Store in your basement/laundry room in an open cardboard box for the winter.
Some crumpled newspapers can be, loosely, put on top.
Do not water! Just let them be for the winter.
In spring--take a peek and maybe mist the roots a bit now and then.

When it is time to plant--VERY gently, separate the clumps. You can break off, and remove, the old roots.
They have done their job!
The red, firm pips sticking up will be where the new stems will grow from.Try not to damage these.

Plant roots about 4" deep in a sunny area and water in. Wait! Water a bit as you wait.
It may take a couple weeks before you see new growth.

Now--there may be people that allow their cannas to remain in the beds as planted for the winter.
I suppose some Folks have protected. mulched areas and the Canna roots can stay in the ground.
I will let those folks to tell you what they do.

Hope this helps. Gita

Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
Charter ATP Member Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Mid-Atlantic Composter Region: Maryland Birds
Cat Lover Dog Lover Region: United States of America
Aug 27, 2016 10:30 PM CST
Huntington looks like it is in Southern MD near the bay. That may be a little bit warmer than central MD where I live. Generally, none of those things you named are considered reliable to leave out through central Maryland winters. I don't know if that area is much different.

Crinum, I think are OK overwinter, Canna overwinter might make it if mulched and winter isn't too bad. There are certain gingers hardy here. And microclimate matters, whether your friend can place these things against a south facing wall, (warm) or if they will go instead on the north (cold). I got two crinum bulbs and they have lived through two winters in my south facing bed. I left canna out one winter and left the big leaves and stems over them but they were very wet and slimey by spring.

..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)
Name: Kabby
Lowndesboro, AL (Zone 8a)
Region: United States of America Region: Alabama Bookworm Echinacea Dog Lover Seed Starter
Plant and/or Seed Trader Butterflies Hummingbirder Birds Tropicals Bulbs
Aug 27, 2016 10:58 PM CST
These are good tips. That's what I'm talking about!!
Name: Judy
Mid Atlantic Coastal Plain USA (Zone 7b)
Aug 28, 2016 8:30 PM CST
Hardy Banana basjoo is hardy here - 7b. Plant where the wind is least likely to tear the leaves, mulch well or leaf cage for winter. I grow all of my colocasia and alocasia in pots/containers which I put in my unheated porch (doesn't freeze) and let them go semi dormant for the winter, withhold water until ready to set back out in Spring.
Name: Yehudith
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
Sep 15, 2016 9:17 AM CST
colcasia and dahlias

I just left mine in the pots and brought them in and left them in the family room. I didn't water until I saw new growth. They did fine. I did the same with a pineapple plant and my gingers.


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