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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

The Archibald Seeds-Iranian Fritillaria's of the Crassifolia complex

Here are some better pictures of the Iranian collection.

JJA 17255
From the Archibald catalog for JJA 17255:

Iran, Kordestan, SW of Daraki (S of Marivan). 2500m. SW-facing limestone slope. #2nd pic (This coll. has to be almost precisely on Wendelbo’s Iranian locality for F. crassifolia subsp. poluninii but this is a big, robust plant about 25cm. high with up to four flowers. The first thought was that it had to be something to do with F. straussii but the leaves are alternate, neither paired nor whorled. It may be best to consider it a new taxon in the F. crassifolia complex. Oleg Polunin collected a herbarium specimen of a similar plant in Iraq in the 1950's (at the same time as the type-collection of F.c. subsp. poluninii) but it has been ignored (maybe because he recounts that his herbarium sheets blew away & the data may be muddled). This area, high in the mountains right on the Iraq-Iran border, has long been inaccessible & is still virtually uncollected. We doubt that it would be possible to repeat our visit. Perhaps "F. crassifolia subsp. axis-mali" might be a currently appropriate name)

JJA 17242:

JJA 17242
From the Seed Catalog:

17242 : FRITILLARIA SP. Iran, Kordestan, E of Shuysheh (SE of Marivan). 1750m. Open shale slopes.

JJA 17242
Note the variability in the seed grown specimens:
This one has less yellow on the outer segments and more tessellated patterning. The leaves are larger and have more of a bluish bloom to them as well, overall it's a larger plant in general. I'm going to isolate the clones from this seed selection this year, so these will not be up for sale.  Maybe some smaller offsets and seeds in the catalog though. I'm still waiting for the monograph because it would be good to sort these out, Does anyone have some information on naming conventions for clonal selections of variable seed grown unidentified specimens?

Cultural notes:
I have grown these in my standard composted cow manure and pumice blend and they seem to do very well, over the last few years I've included smaller amounts of a sandy loam topsoil to retain a slightly higher moisture content in the pots since I've moved to production in a Gage Durapot 505. These are smaller pots that drain well, but with record hot temperatures the past several summers, I think the addition of some loam helps to insulate the bulbs better from the really dry summer heat here in Western Oregon.

Image result for Iran, Kordestan, E of Shuysheh (SE of Marivan).

Here is a photo I could find of the habitat associated with these locations, it's interesting how they state this location is hard to access and difficult to collect in. I guess that makes these bulbs super valuable!

Still chilly and cold, the weatherman says temps are below average for this time of year. 42 and drizzly today.  


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