I coum early to Cyclamen (in the same way I came late to Chrysanthemums). Sorry, good gardening is no laughing matter but I like to plant a pun or two to see how they grow!
Eight Uses of Cyclamen
- As a houseplant to brighten up your room
- As a gift for someone else to brighten their room or day.
- As a thank you, birthday gift, or as a token when visiting.
- Historically they were give for people in hospital but the infection control police put paid to such plant based gifts.
- As a garden stalwart in shade or partial shade under trees.
- Persian cyclamen send a colourful personal message or signifier in pink or brilliant white, cyclamen can convey sympathy and love. Stronger feelings of pleasure, passion, friendship and fun are more appropriate in bright pink, dashing red or violet.
- Cyclamen plants decorate a patio, conservatory, windowsill or any cool room inside the house.
- Try cyclamen as cut flowers flowers!
Florists Frilled to Meet you Cyclamen
Cyclamen As a Garden Stalwart
- The corms will grow in size to saucer or even larger producing the proverbial profusion of purple
peopleI mean flowers. They are also good self sowers with sticky seeds moved away from the parent plant to germinate. The flower stem twists and spirals as it dries then the seed is expelled
- Single flowers sit on top of slim stalks and contrast with heart-shaped dark green foliage. Generally flowering in autumn , winter and late spring depending on variety
- Woodland gardens and shady areas with deciduous trees are good locations of cyclamen.
- Flowers often arrive prior to leaves which can look very distinctive and interesting during winter.
What the Experts Say
Of the 349 species and cultivars on the current RHS web site the 3 most frequently cultivated garden cyclamen are;
- ‘Cyclamen coum AGM: This species and its many excellent cultivars have pink or magenta flowers during the depths of winter from January to March, surviving in the severest weather. Kidney-shaped, dark-green leaves that are often marked silver and white.
- Cyclamen hederifolium AGM: This excellent garden plant will provide ground cover from winter to spring. Large flowers in shades of pink appear before the leaves in early autumn. Marbled foliage bears a resemblance to that of ivy. This species self-seeds freely.
- Cyclamen purpurascens AGM: Very fragrant pink flowers borne with the heart-shaped, shiny, dark green and silvery mottled leaves, flowers from mid-late summer’.
The Cyclamen society have a lot of information on florists’ Cyclamen or Cyclamen persicum cultivars for pot grown plants.
Gardeners tips say ‘Keep cool and you will keep yours.’
Interesting Facts about Cyclamen
- Cyclamen can be a very powerful and violent purgative!
- Cyclamen are poisonous to cats and fish so that may be a reason not to choose them.
- Pregnant women should not use Cyclamen internally or externally!
- Some leaves have a purplish underside with white or silvery patterns on roundish, heart shaped or pointed leaves.
- Florists pot cyclamen are available in mini, midi and large sizes. Modern flowers may be scented and or frilled (at least very happy).
- Wild cyclamen can be seen in there native home lands around the Mediterranean but intensive breeding is now practiced in many countries.
Cyclamen: A Guide for Gardeners, Horticulturists and Botanists by Chris Grey-Wilson