This blog post is dedicated to Lisianthus–everybody’s favorite flower that looks like a rose, but is not a rose. In fact, lisianthus are better than roses, because they have no thorns! Among other, nerdier, flower farmer reasons.
In the rose comparison race, lisianthus come out ahead on vase life as well, lasting much longer than garden roses. And while it’s true that your typical supermarket dozen roses may last a long time in the vase, that’s because of chemical preservatives and fungicides 🙁
Lisianthus, on the other hand, can last a solid 7-10 days, even up to two weeks if the stars align (and you change their water out regularly).
These beautiful blooms are native to warm, dry areas in the Southern US and Mexico, where they grow as biennials or short-lived perennials. Lisianthus don’t survive the winters here in chilly New York, so we grow them as annuals. Since they are technically a biennial, meaning they flower in their second season, lisianthus take a long time to bloom from seed, 6 months or more!
We are growing several new-to-us varieties of Lisianthus this season. One of these is Lisianthus “Doublini,” which has the most adorable miniature blooms, like an old-fashioned spray rose. This one has definitely earned her place in our crop plan for next year.
Another new-to-us variety is called “ABC Purple,” and it’s a deep blue-purple color. What do you think ? I’m not exactly a purple-hater, but it’s not my favorite hue, either. Should we keep this one around, or try for a lighter lavender next season?
You probably don’t love the heat as much as these Lisi’s do, but hopefully you are getting to soak up some good summer sun this weekend. It will be cool again before we know it.
This is an excerpt from the Sea Change Farm newsletter.
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