Andrews Corner garden will be open for the National Gardens Scheme Sunday 23rd April 2-5pm
We have grown Erythroniums in the garden for nearly forty years and each year their wonderful display gets better and better. Flowering early in the year – usually April – they grow very happily in woodland soil in the shade of deciduous trees, mostly maples.
The first one we were given, by a fellow NGS garden opener, was Erythronium White Beauty which clumps up happily over several years. Its beautifully marked leaves are a delight when they first push through the ground in late March. The flowers are a delicate cream colour with red inner markings. A great plant for the beginner but often difficult to dig up and pass on to a friend as the bulbs pull themselves deep into the ground and I have been known to end up with a handful of leaves!
The next Erythronium came from the lovely Garden House in Devon and was Erythronium revolutum. This will very happily seed itself around, thereby increasing the overall effect quite quickly. When growing from seed in a pot it will take about four years to flowering but it is possible to get pots full of multiple seedlings. Then its just patience.
Erythronium hendersonii is a real favourite with its lavender flowers with a darker centre. Unfortunately this is not the easiest to grow and certainly doesn’t multiply up like some of the others. More of a challenge but beautiful when it is happy.
Another good garden hybrid that bulks up well is Erythronium Joanna which has an unusual two tone colouration of yellow and pink. The pink becoming more pronounced as the flower ages.
Now is a good time to buy Erythrouniums as you can see them in flower and they generally settle down quite well when planted in the garden. When moving established clumps in the garden I tend to favour late summer. They can then be split and planted in new positions before they have any chance of drying out.