CYCLAMEN-HEDERIFOLIUM-UND-006Cyclamen have replaced Garden Mums as the bedding plant of choice for fall color.

Though difficult to grow, cyclamen reward us by delivering more color than any fall plant on the market. And while Mums flower for mere weeks, cyclamen blooms will last well beyond the Holidays.

Unlike most Fall flowering plants, the cyclamen produces one flower at the base of each leaf. The more leaves, the more flowers. To produce these leaves, growers must be careful to not over-water, to provide sufficient light, and to properly fertilize the plant. Too much water, too little light, or too much fertilizer will cause the leaves to expand and reduce the number of flowers. Growers must also be careful as to the placement of the plant in the garden, as night temperatures must be cool enough to keep the leaf petiole short, to maintain the vitality and keep it from becoming floppy. These are only the beginning difficulties some have in producing these plants, but after getting the science down, I think most of us would agree, the learning curve is worth it. And because of the difficulty in growing cyclamen, the price has remained steady throughout the last 30 years.

Cyclamen plugs are best planted in June and July, and must be carefully attended to every day. Even one incident of over-watering or excessively fertilizing will adversely affect the appearance of the finished plant.

I introduced this finicky plant as a Fall bedding to my clients in 1982, after seeing them used in Holland, and at first we didn’t know what we were getting ourselves into. However, with faith and patience, The Coyote Valley nursery staff has now been growing Cyclamen for more than 30 years. They have the experience to grow a plant that meets the needs of both landscape designers and landscapers. The company grows both 4” and 6” plants, available from late September to the end of December.

Their crop looks great this year and I invite you to call or go by and see what the can do for you and your clients.