RARE BULB NURSERY. LATVIA
by Dr. Janis Ruksans & Liga Popova

Jānis - Wednesday, 11 April 2018 05:01

Dear Friends - as you saw, I stopped accepting of orders. This year it happens much earlier than last year. Your interest in my bulbs was so great, that I reached allowed amount for keeping of status of small nursery much earlier than last year. And my nursery really is small - all my bulbs are planted in around 8000 pots, placed in poly-tunnel of 400 sq. m. size. The number of different samples decreased too and now there are “only” around 5000 samples, and maximum what is planted is 4 pots from sample, not more. Unfortunately number of crocus samples raised and last checking showed a little more than 1600 samples, but general principle the same - not more than 4 pots from sample, but in 4 pots can be planted up to 60+ corms.

You still can order bulbs if you agree to send payment in cash. I simply can’t exceed my official total sum of sells, controlled by bank, which informs tax people. To change my status and all book-keeping system now, when I’m 72, my needs are limited, all necessary things are built up and nursery established, is not worse of trouble. Sorry.
And I got very nice comment on this from France: “The same system, with quota, exists in France too for agriculture and horticulture. And I understand after all these years of labours you now aspire to a more peaceful life. Indeed we don't need a Ferrari to enjoy life.” An Yann is right - I have simple Skoda car, everything is built up and all what I need - to pay current bills for living, glass of wine in evening and a pair of trips in year for searching of some new crocuses up to still I’m capable walk on mountain slopes. Of course in mountains I’m again looking for cheap hotels, renting ordinary car etc. Actually I can’t understand those rich-mans  who need top model cars, 5+ star hotels etc. All this only approximates end of life on our green Planet.

You can see some pictures from my greenhose at top of Crocus blooming following those links:

http://www.delfi.lv/majadarzs/darzi-latvija-un-pasaule/foto-raiskuma-pasa-zenita-zied-lielaka-krokusu-kolekcija-pasaule.d?id=49855933

 and here:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10213466488795488&set=pcb.10213466509716011&type=3&theater

 

 

 

Jānis - Sunday, 11 March 2018 07:52

Crocus season started. Last 3 days are very cloudy, so flowers stay closed. But flowers come up more and more. Fortunaterly my health improved and I can pass in greenhouse more and more longer hours.

Next Friday we will have the first visitors for open door days from UK, but on Sunday must be a lot of people coming - around 70 anounced themselves. After plea of some visitors I'm entering here schematic designs how to find nursery, because it for second year is replaced.

 

Jānis - Sunday, 04 March 2018 17:27

I just returned from Greece. On my table was a packet from UK waiting for my returning. I was very surprised for it - who could send me bulbs in this time? I not remembered that I ordered something.

Great was my surprise, when opening it I found inside packets with my bulbs packed and posted to customer in UK already in last August. There were attached some paper slip with following text:

“Hello, Last year I received plants that I did not order. Because of birthday party the box was removed from the house and now month later I found it. The enclosed bulbs still seem to have some “life” so I send them back to you. Hopefully you can save these bulbs and sell them again later. Good luck!”

As on packets were order number it was very easy to found who send them, his order and even payment, because this person already paid for all bulbs which he “did not order”. As all packets were open and afterwards closed in different way, I threw them away as I’m not sure that I got back just those bulbs which I sent to this “customer”. Checking order I found that there were 11 packets sent, but only 9 were returned. Of course this customer was enlisted in my “black list” and he never more will receive bulbs from me. Regardless of payment - I’m not growing bulbs for rubbish bin…

Jānis - Monday, 12 February 2018 12:35

Here is winter. Last night was minus 11 C and although following days will be warmer, up to March permanent minuses is offered. Some crocuses under glass-wool sheets started blooming (in tight buds) but much less than in former seasons at the same time. Below cover temperature is between 0 to + 2 C.
I just returned from Karpathos Island in Greece where I went hoping to picture C. ruksansii in the wild and to see its variability. I think I’m unfortunate with Karpathos. My first trip there was 13th of February, 2015. All mountain was covered in snow up to 20+ cm thick, and it was not fresh snow. Next trip there was the same year 13th of April – I found two small spots with Crocus now named C. ruksansii and I think few were collected unnoticed between C. tournefortii. They all were with leaves only. I passed on mountain all day and came back absolutely out of power and in night had serious heart problems, but at least I found the crocus. Next time I was there 2nd of March – found only C. tournefortii. Now I was there 5th of February. Seem that there no winter was at all. Again only C. tournefortii was seen – a lot and everywhere, with prostrate leaves, with erect leaves, and no C. ruksansii at all. The footpass is marked as 1.5 hours long, I was back after 4 hours. Started darkening and it was dangerous to search for it longer.
So I’m confused – when it really blooms in the wild? I have some corms, each has different flower colour, so I want to see its variability in the wild. It is incredible – 4 trips to same place and no results. Too early? Too late this year? Blooming already finished, but leaves not developed? I don’t understand. I’m quite good in spotting of leaves. Next year I will go there twice – in January and again in mid-March (if will not be succesful in January). Now it is principal question for me, or is it worth to use time for this?
Unfortunately it was impossible to pass longer time on Kali Limni. Actually ascend is not too difficult. Pass is stony but not very steep and altitude difference around 400 meters only. We had tickets for Sunday’s evening to be full Monday on Karpathos, but our plain 3 times circled over Island and returned back to Athens due very strong wind. So we reached Karpathos only Monday morning at 12-00. We used all the rest of daylight to reach Kali Limni and to search crocuses on its slopes. Returning flight was on Tuesday morning.
On attached pictures Iris unguicularis blooming there everywhere along our ascend and nice pine tree close to top of Kali Limni.

Jānis - Sunday, 28 January 2018 19:10

 Here dark weather, snow mixed with rain, no one flower opened yet. On picture view of landscape with pergola,where summer parties occur (from upper flat of our house).

 

Jānis - Monday, 22 January 2018 15:53

In China already blooms Tulipa regelii received from me last year. Today I opened my new offer and the first orders started to run in "basket". Almost all T. regelii for sell this year are already sold out, left only 2 or 3 bulbs. Attached pictures were sent to me from China

Jānis - Monday, 22 January 2018 15:48

Passed more than half year since my last entry here. All plantings now are covered and outside now all is in snow. On attached picture two "gards" of our plantings, pictured few days ago, when there were no snow at all. But now all is white and and does visit garden looking for frozen apples. Today even four ran away when I went to add bird's food.

Jānis - Sunday, 23 July 2017 06:03

Passed very long time since my last entry. Far too busy to inform about everydays novelties. Now I finished despatching of orders. Bulbs in general were good, only I would like that crocus and fritillaria corms to be larger, but we can't stay against difficult climate conditions, at least corms were healthy and we got no one complaint from our customers.

Unfortunately for me working in garden becomes more and morer difficult, I can't work on knees more and when I harvested bulbs planted on ground level I did this laying flat on ground, so new raised beds were urgently needed and in future all bulbs will be grown only in pots. Due limited place I strongly decided - not more than 4 pots from sample/taxa/cultivar.

Now parallely with repotting are going building of new raised beds. Hope that next week they will be ready (see attached picture). The first of new one beds now are almost half-filled with windflowers (Anemone nemorosa and ranunculoides) cultivars, eranthis. Tomorrow will start repotting of Erythroniums and after that will follow frits. Then again will return to crocuses and parallely will pot Corydalis. Some of crocuses already has long shoots, so autumn blooming is not far.

When new raised beds will be finished it will be possible to place in greenhouse around 7000 pots.

Jānis - Sunday, 26 February 2017 10:15

Finally my new book is on my table. Today I started packing of it for sponsors and pre-printing orders. It looks really great!

 

Jānis - Tuesday, 14 February 2017 14:57

Shocking news for me.  Tomorrow I planned go to Riga to pick up first copies of my book and some minutes ago got call from Printing House that binding machine broke, around 100 copies are damaged and all process stopped up to 27-28 of February, because damage is very serious and must come specialists from producer of machine from Japan.
If I will not receive book on 28th - I decided to cancel contract and will go to another printer. Most likely I will loose prepayment and another company will be more expensive, but I really tired from all those delays and "excuses" - no such paper in Latvia, line waiting to the best printing machine etc. etc.
Most pity, that I deceived you and now left only apologize to all my sponsors and customers of book. Sorry, friends. But you didn't lost your money!!! Book will be printed in any case even if I would be forced to mortgage all my property.

Jānis - Tuesday, 14 February 2017 12:36

Today opened Crocus beds from winter cover and first crocuses in few hours opened their flowers. From top - Crocus fauseri, henriki, munzurense, pseudonubigena, gembosii x mawii, sozenii.

 

Jānis - Monday, 13 February 2017 17:59

Yesterday I opened my new offer for 2017. The replies were so abundant than never before. During one day I got almost 30 orders. All the day I "polished" my home-page - corrected spelling mistakes, corrected some pictures, some item numbers. The first orders showed some faults and those were corrected, too, But the first customers don't must vorry - all ordered items were registered according your wishes.

Today started binding process of my book, too. It means that may be this weekend I will start with its packing and posting.

As you can see - no more possibilities to enter your comments/questions on Garden News pages. It was due horrible ammount of spams everyday appearing here. Today again were attempts to enter fake-advertisements here - but without success. If you have some questions - please ask me by e-mail.

 

Jānis - Monday, 16 January 2017 16:17

Few minutes ago my new Crocus book's page layout was forwarded to printing company. They promissed to finish printing during 2 weeks and then I will start despatching of book to all my sponsors and those who already sent orders. I want to remind that books format is A-4, size 568 pages and are included more than 1700 colour pictures covering 235 species recognised before 1st December, 2016. Books price (including postage) is 65,- Euro for Europe and 70,- Euro for out of Europe.

Jānis - Tuesday, 03 January 2017 06:00

Next week my CROCUS book is going to printer. Now I'm making last reading of proofs, looking for wrong dots, comma etc. Sorry, only after finishing with book will start with new catalogue.

Jānis - Tuesday, 03 January 2017 05:58

Now I'm growing those only under cover, but many Iranians I saw paerfectly growing on open field in Gatersleben (Germany) Institute of Plant Genetics. So you can try. Some Central Asians grew outside very well, too. Most important is good drainage. I grew Iranian A. brachyphilum for 20 years in outside garden, although in nature it grows on sunbaked nude slopes of small stone chips, getting very hot and dry conditions in summer. Of course I always harvested them at end of vegetation and kept in bulb shed during summer. Lost only when planted them on new spot which turned waterloged in winter...

Philipp - Monday, 02 January 2017 19:21

Dear Janis,

I was wondering if the following Iranian Allium species just survive under glass or if they even accept some rain in summer in the garden. 

Allium derderianum

Allium elburzense 

 

All the best from Berlin

Philipp

Jānis - Friday, 25 November 2016 17:41

The work on books layout is almost finished. I just counted - the 235 species included (one new described in the book) are ilustrated with almost 1700 colour pictures and 232 distribution maps.

Still left to make page layouts for general part, keys and appendixes and to select pictures for the first part - general information.

Almost every one to whom I turned asking for permittion to use their pictures or to supply me with some, replied with - yes (with only one exception) so almost all species are well illustrated. Only those which I never saw in nature and never grew by myself or by my friends, left without pictures. Such are not many.

I just made agreement with printing house that they will start to work with printing 2nd of January, 2017. I deceided to start this a little later to avoid pre-Christmas chaos when every printing house is extremely occupied with New Year's calendars, greeting cards etc. The January is the most quiet month, so all attention will go to my book.

I apologise to those who hoped to receive it as Christmas gift, sorry. But I prefaired top quality without rush. So I hope to post book at end of January.

Jānis - Monday, 05 September 2016 16:42

Today I got so many greetings for my birthday, that I must to hire the special person to reply everyone individually, so I use my homepage to express my greatest thanks to everyone who remembered about my 70.

In same time I want inform you that interest about my new Crocus book is very great and if sponsoring will continue on same speed and amount (most for 100-200,- Euros, several 500,- Eu donations and two for even 1000,- Euro) I hope to publish book for Christmas.

Many thanks to everyone!

Janis

Jānis - Monday, 29 August 2016 07:02

Now I finished work on the manuscript of a new crocus book - The World of Crocuses. It is a résumé of my 50 years of work with Crocus, my researches on them in the wild and in the garden and it will be dedicated to the 100th Anniversary of Latvian State, which will be celebrated in2018.

The new book will include chapters with general information and cultivation of crocuses, their morphology and keys for all species recognised at the moment of completion of the manuscript. The greatest part is dedicated to detailed information of the (in excess of) 230 known species of crocuses with details about their requirements in cultivation according to my experience. Almost all species (with very, very few exceptions) are supplied with distribution maps, richly illustrated with pictures from wild and cultivation. This new book will be more than 500 pages long and will include more than 1500 colour pictures. The species are arranged in alphabetical order, making it easy to find them without special searching by Index.

 The significance of this new book has been appreciated by Latvian Academy of Sciences and it will be published by the Academy. Publishing costs are quite high and the Latvian Academy is short of finances, so money to cover printing costs must be raised by myself. I can partly cover those from my savings, but I’m still short of 15,000 Euros.

 So:

Everyone who will donate at least 50 Euros (plus postage costs for delivery - 15,- Euro for Europe, 20,- for overseas) for the printing of this Monograph (more will be specially appreciated!) will receive a free copy of book, with the personally addressed signature of author. Everyone who will donate at least 500 Euros will be mentioned in the book’s Acknowledgments chapter with full information about donors, according to their wishes and will receive three signed copies without any additional payments.

To receive detailed information about sponsoring the project, please write to me via e-mail: janis.bulb@hawk.lv and you can see sample pages in internet Journal of Scottish Rock Garden Club - International Rock Gardening - opening link http://www.srgc.org.uk/logs/logdir/2016Aug251472126130IRG_August_80.pdf

Please consider getting involved with this project!

Many thanks!

Janis

Jānis - Friday, 19 August 2016 08:13

Yesterday I finished with book-keeping and sent out invoices for still unpaid orders. We now started replanting and most of Colchicums and all Biarums, Eminiums are back in ground now. Tomorrow will go autumn blooming crocuses and we will start posting of inland orders.

Peonies in general will be posted starting from next week and in first week of September. They still remain under supervision of Liga but small bulbs are now back in my hands. I almost finished manuscript of new book and now I have more free time for bulbs.

In pots started blooming the first autumn crocuses - this year - Crocus suworovianus. Still are blooming Acis and few autumn cyclamens grown by me.

Peter - Sunday, 03 July 2016 09:55

Hi,

 

i would be interested in paeonia wendelboi and also the hybrid wendelboi X mlokosewitchii when and if you have that.

 

Kind regards

 

Peter Lunding

Jānis - Thursday, 07 July 2016 11:25

Hello, Peter!

Yes, we have them.

You should fill the ordering form ( you can find in catalogue wendelboi X mlokosewitchii hybrid) and at notes please leave message that you want p.wendelboi too.

 

 

Jānis - Wednesday, 22 June 2016 18:16

Last night was summer solstice. We celebrated it together with folk group at bonfire starting with last rays of sun up to sunrise this morning. All the time we were singing folk-songs from pagan times greating sun, moon, garden crops etc. etc and dancing folk dances under music of old strings, bagpipes. It is named Janis day, although by nowadays calendar it will be only night between 23rd and 24th of June, but we celebrated it by nature calendar. In Latvia they still are holydays and there are maid special beer and special cheese - named Janis cheese. On picture Janis cheese prepared for me by my wife Guna.

Janis

Jānis - Thursday, 16 June 2016 18:33

imageLast Sunday we had "Peony Sunday" in our nursery with more than 600 visitors. We were very tired, but happy, too, for great interest. Janis lectured about wild peonies, there were concerto with songs about flowers where as artists were our granddaughter Paula with her friends, another lecture about peonies in cosmetic performed by Guna's eldest daughter Una etc. You can see some pictures from this wonderful day. There was small exhibition of peonies (in case if outside would be rainy weather), wonderfully bloomed waterlilies - we have around 80 varieties.

imageimageimageimageimageimage

Līga - Tuesday, 24 May 2016 10:37

Peonia species at field right now..

image image image image image image image image image image image image

 

Līga - Tuesday, 17 May 2016 13:30

some anemone photo:

image imageimage