New Member Intro

Paul Garrett ksfgarrett at OZEMAIL.COM.AU
Mon May 14 13:00:52 CEST 2001

Having just joined the AEG, I've been urged by Ray (GRSJnr) to make a brief
introduction.  Here it is:

Hi, I'm Paul Garrett from Canberra, Australia.  I am a genuine "newbie" as
far as Arisaemas are concerned and my "collection", if it can called that,
is very small - literally, as all I have is seed.  By following every
mail-order path I could find, I have managed to acquire the following
species (mainly from Jim and Jenny Archibald in Wales and B&T SeedWorld in

candidissimum, ciliatum var. liubaense, flavum, griffithii var. pradhanii,
kishidae, propinquum, rhombiforme,  tortuosum, dilatatum

So far, so good.  The seeds are safely ensconced in damp paper towelling and
I am awaiting developments.  Its late autumn (fall) here now and I am
planning to raise the progeny under cover for the next six months.

I come to growing Arisaemas with some relevant experience - Trilliums,
Erythroniums etc and have kept tropical aquatic Aroids (Cryptocoryne and
Anubias) for many years.

For those unfamiliar with Australia, Canberra is the capital, located around
150km from the coast at an elevation of around 600 metres.  It is three
hours drive south west of Sydney. Winter minimums are typically -5C,
but -10C is not uncommon.  I think "Zone 8" would cover it.  It's frosty but
snow on the ground is rare.  The mountains surrounding the city and to the
ranges to the south are snow covered from around June to October.  Rainfall
is low and evenly distributed throughout the year.  Summer maximums are
usually in the mid 30sC.  Right now, the city is brilliant with autumn
colour from the thousands of "exotic" (to us) deciduous trees thoughtfully
planted by the brilliant people who planned this place at the beginning of
last century.  We have Oaks, Maples and Elms in spades - as well as millions
of native Eucalypts, wattles, Banksias, Grevilleas etc etc..  While the
climate at least gives me a fighting chance with glorious woodland plants,
our soil is another story - clay to the core.  Lots of manure, gypsum and sa
nd is required.  Arisaema pests (like deer, bears and rattlesnakes) are not
common here but possums do plague my garden at times.

Australia's strict quarantine regime means that live plants are very
difficult to import and Arisaemas are rare as hens' teeth in the nursery
trade - I think I've seen three in the last ten years.  Suitably cold areas
are restricted to elevated parts of the Southern part of the continent and
to Tasmania, Melbourne and Adelaide (which take the winds from the Southern
Ocean).  I doubt the market would justify imports on a commercial scale but
I am happy to see keen collectors making efforts.  New Zealanders let
anything into their country, so are in a better position to collect rarities

That's enough for now.  I'm enjoying the traffic here and have mined the
archives and the AEG files for much valuable information.  Thanks for

Paul Garrett
Canberra, Oz
Zone 8

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