Coris monspeliensis

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John

  • Hero Member
Coris monspeliensis
« on: September 13, 2011, 09:19:18 AM »
I first saw this in the wild in the south of France about 30 years ago or more whilst I was out there replanting a garden for a client. I was fascinated by it as it looks like a thyme but is a relative of the primrose, a favourite family of mine which also used to include Cyclamen. I brought a few seeds home with the intention of growing it in a pot in the greenhouse. I couldn't get it to germinate just sat in the greenhouse and was about to give up and decided to pop it into the airing cupboard. Within days all of the seed germinated! It grew well for a few years before I lost it.
This May whilst visiting Brian Constable in Catalonia I saw lots of it mostly in full flower and in varying shades of magenta pink. Here's a picture from that visit.
I have placed it here because although it has a woody base it is more of a sub-shrub which many people would include in herbaceous. E.g. Bergenia, Primula auricula, Dianthus etc.
John
Horticulturist, photographer, author, garden designer and plant breeder; MGS member and RHS committee member. I garden at home in SW London and also at work in South London.

JPB

  • Newbie
Re: Coris monspeliensis
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2011, 09:23:26 AM »
In 2009 I found a lot of Coris in the Cabo de Gata area, SE-Spain on the sides of a newly dug road. I do grow them with succes now and although they don't set seed here in the NE part of Holland, they are very easy from cuttings. It is one of my favourites, though they do not grow as compact as in habitat (see picture)

Hans

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John

  • Hero Member
Re: Coris monspeliensis
« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2011, 09:48:20 AM »
I didn't see any so compact in Catalonia. I presume it was the habitat and dry conditions that produced such a compact plant. Were they all like this? Shame we can't keep them so compact in cultivation.
I should have mentioned that this genus too along with Cyclamen is now considered to belong to the Myrsinaceae.
John
Horticulturist, photographer, author, garden designer and plant breeder; MGS member and RHS committee member. I garden at home in SW London and also at work in South London.

JPB

  • Newbie
Re: Coris monspeliensis
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2011, 10:48:52 AM »
Yes, this plant was growing in full sun on a dry clay-ish soil. Some others did grow in the shade of some huge rocks. They did look more like yours. Here's a picture of my plant under artificial light. I plan to prune my new cuttings in order to get a more compact growth. They don't mind pruning at all

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John

  • Hero Member
Re: Coris monspeliensis
« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2011, 11:27:23 AM »
It has such a unique character and those amazing zygomorphic flowers.
John
Horticulturist, photographer, author, garden designer and plant breeder; MGS member and RHS committee member. I garden at home in SW London and also at work in South London.