Kristl Walek garnorth at ISTAR.CA
Tue Apr 8 05:29:10 CEST 1997

This, my second introduction, comes two weeks after my first spiralled
into the nether regions of computer-land. And because, Eric now tells
me, I mistyped the address!!! Spring is (almost) here. After a weekend
of blinding sunshine that finally melted the remaining 2 feet of snow,
we are back to -7C tonight. Snow this afternoon (heading East from a
recent Manitoba blizzard).

Thank you for the public and many private welcomes to AEG. Having been
a silent sponge on Alpine L and other groups for some months now, it
was great to be "called out" - an incentive to participate in what I
already find to be a refreshing group.

I am  hoping that the few of us gardening in the frigid zones will
rise to the challenge of providing a Zone 4 (or colder????) list in
the not so distant future. What this means, of course is growing all
we can get our hands on AND planting out all those babes without fear
or hesitation (well, at least not too much).....

I have not tested many Arisaema species in Z4, as I moved to this 8
acre site in the late fall 3 years ago, bringing only A. sikokianum
with me. A. triphyllum turned out to be naturalized here, and A.
dracontium found its way into the garden somehow my first year here.
Over the 2 years since the move, I have devoted considerable energy to
growing every species I managed to get from the exchanges in order to
get the process moving along. The only other to actually make it into
the garden last year was A. flavum. All  others at various stages have
been overwintered thus far and will be planted out this year.

This year's seedlings- working from memory (amurense, consanguineum,
jacquemontii, ringens, can-never-get-enough sikokianum, speciosum,
taiwanensis, tortuosum, urashima, various ACE species.). The
sikokianum seeds this year had been collected fresh and put into a
plastic bag. I had intended to sow them in short order, but got busy &
forgot. When I finally ran into them again about 2-3 weeks later, the
100+ seeds had all germinated almost 100% in the plastic bag (with
some residual moisture) and were very easy to line up in deep flats a
few inches apart, where they have been since October.

As you might remember from Tony's welcome, I run a seedhouse
specializing in cold-hardy perennials (1991) and it likely comes as no
surprise that my first passion is seeds & germination. I have worked
with Norm Deno's program for some time now and his March 1997
supplement mentions some of my research.  Most species in catalogue
are grown here, some wild collected. As the business quickly grew to
international proportions a few years ago, time to do what I love most
(germination work and field collecting seed) becomes more & more
difficult. I did get to North Carolina last year (where I met Tony &
drooled over his Asarums-my other weakness) and plan to head to the
Canadian prairies and the Rockies this summer. But expanding our
collection, the display gardens, seed harvest, testing, doing
catalogue (retail & wholesale), etc. is full time year round- we also
operate a short-season retail nursery from May-mid-July.

I have very little time to spend on the computer-only every few days
at most for a brief time. However, I particularly look forward to the
AEG postings and hope I will occasionally have something worthwhile to
Kristl  Walek
Z4 North Gower, Ontario.
(Minimum temp this winter -35C) but only briefly.
It was quite a wonderful, mild winter, hovering around -20 on average
with a snow cover that actually stayed. We rarely have any.

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