Not too far from my house, there is a huge discount nursery.  I went there for the first time this spring, and it was quite an adventure.  Getting there more than a few minutes after it opens means parking somewhere other than the parking lot, and waiting for a cart.  Luckily, my friend and I arrived early enough that we were able to park in the lot and snag a single cart.  We thought that sharing one cart would limit how much we bought, but we were wrong.  We still managed to fill every available inch with plants.  Even though I had a shopping list of specific flowers, it’s impossible not to look at all the other types.  There were so many flowers I wanted to take home, but I knew I would have nowhere to plant them in my small yard. I did manage to buy only 3 or 4 items that were not on my list.

One of the flowers I did not plan to buy was the Schizanthus pictured above.  On a huge, empty table, this little plant was sitting all by itself, covered with beautiful flowers.  It was unfamiliar to me, but the tag said it grew in the sun, and I had an empty spot, so into the cart it went. When I got home, I realized that the little tag was less than informative.  Other than the name, Treasure Trove Rose Bicolor, and the need for sun, it was blank. Planted in the ground, in the sun, it was covered with blooms for about a month, and then it died.  One day it looked great, the next day, it was shriveled and brown. 

 Looking back, I should have done a little more research before it died, rather than after.  Finding out that Schizanthus is commonly called Poor Man’s Orchid or Butterfly Flower is interesting, but it won’t bring it back to life. Another of the things that the tag neglected to mention is that this plant requires perfect drainage.  If I had known that, I would never have bought it because nothing in my yard, including the drainage, is perfect. Also, I have since learned that this flower prefers to be potbound, which means planting it in the ground was my next mistake.  I’m not sure if either of these conditions was enough to cause its death, but knowing what I know now might have prolonged its life. The moral of this story is, know what you are planting and what it needs to live.


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3 Responses to “Schizanthus”

  1. DennisVega Says:

    There is obviously a lot to know about this. There are some good points here.

  2. RobD Says:

    Your blog is so informative … ..I just bookmarked you….keep up the good work!!!! 🙂

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