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Terry Underhill                      

Cyclamen pseudoibericum

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I was presented with two pots of Cyclamen pseudo-ibericum by a friend for my birthday a couple of years ago. It is a beautiful Spring-flowering specie from Turkey. The flowers, often with petals 2.5 cm long by x 1.25 cm wide, are large for a specie Cyclamen , deep rich crimson-carmine, usually with a pale pink or white mouth to the flower. The original stock, believed to have been lost to cultivation, was collected in 1897. It has since been re-introduced from stock collected about 70 yrs ago from the Syrian-Turkish border, and many other collectors since then including two outstanding botanists, Davis and Polunin.

In the centre of each 9cm plastic pot was a small globular tuber, a little flattened on the top, with violet fragrant flowers on 7cm long stalks arising from a very short stem on the top of the tuber.

Flowering was followed by a sea of leaves, dark green with lighter marbling above and red-purple beneath. I kept the pots cool, and watered with a weak liquid feed while in leaf, and kept them out of the direct sun.

The tubers have grown and hopefully I should get some seed from the capsules, having hand pollinated the blooms, giving me an opportunity to try and naturalise some in a sheltered spot in my garden.