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Classification, origin and description
Typology: Perennials, Tuberose
Propagation: seed, division of tubers
Etymology: the name of the genus comes from two Greek roots: er (= spring) e anthos (= flower) and refers to its early flowering.
There are some species widespread in Europe and Siberia. They are among the first flowers to bloom, in January-February, together with the Snowdrops. The flower appears on the plant immediately after the first leaves. The corollas of the E. are botanically curious: the yellow petals are actually part of the calyx, while the actual petals are made up of small green cups, placed around the stamens, which contain the nectar.
Eranthis hyemalis (photo www.srgc.org.uk)
How it is grown
They are small plants with rhizomatous, blackish, slow-growing roots, suitable for the rock garden or to be naturalized in shady or moderately humid places in the garden, among shrubs or under trees. Once implanted they must not be disturbed anymore because they suffer from the transplant. When the bloom is exhausted, towards the month of May, the leaves die and enter the vegetative rest period that lasts all summer. They have no particular soil needs. The best method of reproduction is the division of the rhizomes in the rest period or even the sowing, done outdoors, as soon as the seed is mature.
Species and varieties
- Eranthis hyemalis Salisb .: species native to Europe. It has a height of about 10 cm; the flowers are yellow, erect cup-shaped. The cilicica variety bears larger flowers and beautiful bronze green leaves, finely carved.
- Eranthis siberica DC .: species native to Siberia. Lower than the previous one, it also has yellow but smaller flowers.
Diseases, pests and adversities
They are resistant plants that do not present particular problems of diseases and pests.