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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Colchicum bivonae and the end of the sale season.

Colchicum bivonae
Widely distributed Mediterranean species, Greece-Turkey-Sardinia, I love the tesselations on this one and I keep meaning to put a infrared or UV filter on this to see what it might look like to a pollinator species.

 I've wrapped up bulbs sales for this year. Thanks again to all the great customers. It was another fun year for us at Illahe. If you missed out on anything, I'll leave the catalog up and you can dream about getting your order in early next year. It was a bit of an abbreviated season for me, so expect much more next year.

A thick smokey haze has filled the valley as wildfires continue to burn up in the cascades. Temperatures hit 100 here today and you could taste the burning pitch in the air. We need a cool down and some rain soon.


Thursday, August 24, 2017

Colchicum alpinum

Colchicum alpinum
The classic alpine meadow saffron from the high altitude regions of the European Alps. This species does very well in the unprotected raised beds. The culture is easy and top dressings of composted cow manure mixed with pumice every so often have yielded a nice increase in corms. Another nice early bloomer doing it's think in late August.

So tomorrow the shipping season ends and I can get back to taking pics of the fall blooming species as the come on.

Hot, sunny and dry weekend ahead! Temps in the 90's although a sprinkle was felt today on the way into work.



Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The first of the fall bloomers have arrived-The Shipping season is coming to an end.

Colchicum haynaldii

Grecian species, introduced into cultivation in the 1980's, this one is relatively new to me, I like the relatively compact habit and the very early bloom season of late August.

Catalog Update:

 I am going to wrap up the shipping season by this weekend so please get any last minute orders in by friday. I'll be offering the following discount:

10% off order totals until the shipping season has ended, This Friday the 25th of August. 


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Its totally better than you can even imagine!

It's really hard to to find the words to describe the intensity of a Total Solar Eclipse, I had no idea it would be that amazing. The Pictures don't do it justice and words just can't describe the eerily changing colors as the sun goes away. Then the bright, silver and white light dancing around the rim as the moon totally obscured the sun. 360 degree sunset, I was floored and everyone who witnessed it felt something 

A Total Solar Eclipse from Prospect Hill in South Salem. 

My Uncle Orion set up his Surveyers scope to project an image of the progress.

So the bulb sales are winding down and some of the fall bloomers are starting to come on, I think I'm going to wrap up sales this week. I'll offer 10% off total order discount from now until Friday, the list is updated and there are still a few choice things left.


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Specialty Bulb List 2017

SPECIALTY BULB LIST 2017-Shipping has ended for the season, this list is up for reference only-

                This year is a bit of an abbreviated list, as some pressing summer activities I can’t get away from limited my time for the harvest this year. This year I am very pleased to be offering Diana Reeck’s ‘Pacific Sunset’ strain of Erythoniums. As always, I owe a huge thanks to Jane McGary for stock, advice on growing, the wonderful experience of working in her garden, moving rocks and pulling weeds, and imparting so much of her knowledge about specialty bulbs.
 This year has been setting records for heat waves and rainless summer weather. No big surprise after last year’s prologue, where I mentioned heat tolerance and summer drought seem to be the number one selective pressure in the production line these days. Some bulbs are available only in small numbers so get your order in early. I’ll probably be done shipping in 2 weeks at the most, I’ll update the list as stuff sells out.
The Nursery: Illahe Nursery and Garden is located in the South Salem hills of the Central Willamette Valley of Oregon at 600 feet in elevation. The climate here has been described as Mediterranean, although it really is cooler and wetter. Rainfall occurs here primarily between the months of October and May and ranges between 40 and 80 inches. Temperatures in the winter rarely fall below 20 deg. F. in the winter, but the last few winters have seen temperatures as low as 9 deg. F inside an unheated greenhouse. Summers are generally dry. The Jory loam soil here is deep and extremely fertile. Agriculture in the immediate vicinity is mostly Christmas tree production, vineyards , nursery and grass seed production.

To see pictures of the bulbs, please visit the Illahe blog at www.illaherarebulbs.blogspot.com,  or try The Random House Book of Bulbs by Martyn Rix and Roger Phillips,  or the highly recommended Pacific Bulb Society website.

Size of  bulbs: Bulbs have been selected for large size in hopes of providing flowering in the shortest period possible, but some bulbs are available in smaller sizes and those are listed below. Often newly potted bulbs need a year to settle in before flowering. All bulbs are priced per single bulb, unless otherwise noted.

Hardiness: It is impossible precisely to predict the winter survival of bulbous plants in a given area. My garden is a notorious frost pocket, and although some of the bulbs are grown in an unheated, open-ended greenhouse, many are grown out in the open in raised frames.  Refer to standard authors such as Martyn Rix and Brian Mathew for guidance, remembering that they refer to gardens in Britain, USDA Zones 8-9. It is wise to cultivate new (and expensive) bulbs under cover until you have enough to risk in the open garden, where not only weather but also predators threaten them. (For details, see Jane McGary’s chapter on "Bulb and Alpine Frames" in Rock Garden Design and Construction, Timber Press, 2003.) Unless otherwise noted all these plants can survive at least a few degrees of frost, provided they have good drainage and the foliage is not wet. In areas with snow cover and/or dry winters, they can survive more cold.

Domestic customers:
Ordering: Please send a list by e-mail. All orders are filled in the order received, so get your order to me as quickly as possible for the best selection. Send orders to illaherarebulbs@gmail.com
Shipping: I will bill you for Priority Mail postage.
Payment: DO NOT SEND PAYMENT WITH YOUR ORDER. All bulbs are available in limited quantities and you may not receive everything you want. You will be billed with your shipment, with a Paypal invoice,  so you will receive an invoice in the email and I will ship when you have paid. If the money is not deposited within three days of invoicing your bulbs will be returned to the inventory rack.
International Customers:
Ordering: Send your order via email.  All orders are filled in the order received, so get your order to me as quickly as possible for the best selection. Send orders to illaherarebulbs@gmail.com.
Shipping: I will bill you for first class postage, rate will be based on your order size. If you desire a faster postage rate please let me know this, and I will let you know the rate when your order is ready to be shipped.  I will bill you for Phytosanitary certification, that cost is $45 per order. Due to inspection/phytosanitary scheduling I can only offer a few weeks of international shipping so please place your order no later than August 30th, 2017. Get together with a garden group and do one big order if you are international and that way we can all save money and time! Seriously, it would help me, you, the plant inspector and the postman if we all consolidated a bit.
Payment: International customers will be required to pay by PayPal. Your order will be filled and inspected, you will be sent an email invoice with the PayPal deposit information. When the money is deposited your order will be shipped. If you must cancel an order, please do so promptly. If the money is not deposited within 3 business days, you will be sent a notification email and your bulbs will be returned to the inventory rack. Your bulb order leaves here with Phytosanitary certificate stating that it is free from pests and diseases and therefore not subject to quarantine; however, I do not have any control over the receiving countries’ agricultural inspections, so I cannot offer any guarantee, and the loss should your government hold your bulbs is on you. Please notify me immediately of any issues and I will do what I can.
Remember all bulbs are available in limited quantities, so whether you are domestic or international please realize I sell out of some stuff very quickly, so get your order in as soon as possible. Email is preferred for questions related to bulb purchases.
Please feel free to forward this list to anyone who might be interested.
Thank you,
Mark Akimoff
Illahe Nursery and Gardens
7645 Sunnyside Rd SE
Salem, Or 97306
Allium textile Central United States; clusters of starry white flowers. $2

Colchicum/Autumn Crocus
Colchicum bivonae Sardinia-Turkey, large, tessellated pink flowers, dramatic. $5 Sold Out
Colchicum montanum I need to point out that when I got this when it was called Colchicum pyrenaicum, and now I believe it may be  Merendera. Either way, it’s a lovely fall bloomer with its flowers borne right at soil level.  Spain and Portugal $4 Sold Out

Crocus mathewii To quote Janus Ruksans “among the showiest and most desirable plants of every Crocus collection”. Fall blooming, discovered as recently as 1992 in the Lycian Taurus Mts. of southernTurkey. $7 Sold Out
 Crocus mathewii

Crocus tournefortii Grecian species with lovely lilac, yellow throated fall blooming flowers. Interestingly one of only three crocus species to keep its flowers open at night, presumably because of a night flying or crawling pollinator. $6  Sold Out


Erythronium ‘Pacific Sunset’-This is pretty much unreleased genetic material, a fantastic showy strain that clumps up fast!

Erythronium ‘Pacific Sunset’ strain
Over 20 years ago, Oregon plant breeder Walter Blom created some truly unique Erythronium hybrids.  He kept only the best, selecting for multiple flowers, vigor, and good increasing qualities.  We are finally releasing this first group of his hybrids as Erythronium  ‘Pacific Sunset’.  There are about 8 separate clones in this strain, and they may differ slightly in size or intensity of color, but all have lovely pink flowers with a delicate stain of green at the base, with silvery veined leaves.  They will grow to about 12”, with 2-3 flowers per stem, and increase to larger clumps every year.  1 for $7 or 3 for $20

Fritillaria acmopetala 'Dark Form'
Fritillaria acmopetala ‘Dark Form’ Eastern Mediterranean; $6
Fritillaria amana Turkey; a fast increaser, and a good performer in the open garden. $4
F. caucasica

Fritillaria caucasica JJA 85122 The following excerpt is from the Archibalds’ catalog and while the number I have doesn’t match what I can find in the archives, this should give you some idea of the species and its habitat: “Armenia, Aragats range, Kasah river valley. (F. caucasica as a whole is not often seen in cultivation and we have little, if any, material from so far E in the UK. The species supposedly extends from the cold NE corner of Turkey across Transcaucasia into NW Iran. As we know it in Turkey, it is rather a fine thing with quite large, conical, glaucous purple-brown bells but we have not seen this form.)” Dark bells. $6

Fritillaria davisii Short stems, dark pendent bells, increases well. $4
Fritillaria elwesii Beautiful bells with a dusty bloom on the petals. $4
Fritillaria orientalis Caucasus, checkered pendant bells, easy grower. $4
 Fritillaria pontica

Fritillaria pontica Tall, pale green broad pendant bells, easy lg. $4

F. Pudica “Richard Britten”

Fritillaria pudica ‘Richard Britten’ Larger flowered form of our wonderful native species. $7 Sold Out
Fritillaria purdyi x biflora Robust strain that arose with Jane; these are F2 seedlings, typically will have purdyi-type black-and-white checked flowers on robust biflora-type foliage and stems. $5  Sold Out

Geranium macrostylum ‘Talish Tuberous species collected by Janis Ruksans in the Talish Mountains of Northwest Iran. $4
Iris bucharica ‘Conquest’ lovely white and yellow flowers, a strong grower for me in the raised beds, it’s said to be one of the best for the open garden. $8 Sold Out



Narcissus hispanicus ssp. bujei Spain, bright yellow trumpet, fast increaser and tremendous garden subject. $4
Narcissus romieuxii Pale yellow widely flared “hoop petticoat” flowers, early. $4 Sold Out

 Narcissus watieri

Narcissus watieri From the Atlas Mts. of Morocco, beautiful white flowers.  $6
Narcissus wilkommii A deep yellow Jonquilla species with a large corona. $3
Narcissus x gracilis an assumed hybrid between N. jonquilla and N. poeticus, you can’t really go wrong with those parents, right? $3
Narcissus x odorus Hybrid between N. jonquilla and N. psuedonarcissus  or  perhaps N. hispanicus. Since it has been known in cultivation since 16th century, is it surprising the actual parents aren’t known? $3

Notholirion thomsonianum Kashmir/Himalaya. Winter grower. Superb pink Fls. $4 Sold Out
Scilla mischtschenkoana N. Iran. Large fls, early. $4
Scilla verna For some reason I like to think of this as Europe’s version of the indomitable Camas. $3
Scilla vincentii late, blue or white, small and refined $3
Sternbergia sicula Mediteranean limestone dweller with wonderful yellow fall flowers $5 Sold Out
Tritelia ixiodes ssp. analina California, Sierra Nevada. Very cool yellow-umbel flowers. $4

Carnivorous Plants: I have to ship these as bareroots in moistened peat or vermiculite, with the pitchers cut back or folded over.  Not sure about the viability of International shipping but I will try if you are willing to pay for it.
Darlingtonia californica Oregon’s own unique pitcher plant, the Cobra Lily. This form is incredibly stoloniferous, and has been an easy grower given a cool aquatic root run, these are established quart pot sized specimens. $20.
Sarracenia minor  The Hooded Pitcher from Pine Savannas, North Carolina to Florida. One of the species capable of growing in slightly drier conditions. $14
Sarracenia leucophylla The White Topped Pitcher plant, from bogs and pine savannas from  Mississippi to Alabama, a stunning bug killer. $14
Sarracenia sp. I think this is S. oreophila, but that is really, really rare……???? From cultivated source material, as are all the offerings except seeds. $25

Epipactis gigantea The Stream Helleborine, our native orchid, not carnivorous but often seen growing in the same situations as Darlingtonia californica, in culture it wants the same cool aquatic root run.  These are well rooted 4 inch size, shipped bareroot in moist peat or vermiculite. $12. 

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Harvest 2017

It's a muggy 90 with ample humdity and a generally miserable feel for an Oregon summer. But the harvest is happening anyway.

Hope to have the list out very soon so keep checking!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The Calm Before the Storm

A calm summer evening at Illahe Nursery and Gardens

I've had quite a few inquiries about the availability list so I thought I would offer this update. I'm going to start digging bulbs this weekend, with any luck the list should be out by mid to late next week. I am pleased to announce that I will be offering some of Diana Reecks incredible clumping Erythronium's on this years list so be sure to check back often to get in on that offering. Look through the April posts to see what you can get.

In other news, it's insanely hot here in the valley this week, highs topping 105 today and it's supposed to stay super hot the whole week and into the next. Ugghhhh.....I'm not a big fan.