ORNAMENTAL PLANTS OF HORTICULTURE VALUE
Selection of perennials
According to different taxonomic treatments, this genus includes
55 or 17 species, mainly in countries around the Mediterranean,
Black and Caspian seas. Russian taxonomists consider there are
8 species in the FSU, all in the Caucasus. Only two species,
C. coum Mill. and C. purpurascens Mill., also occur
outside the Caucasus and they are known in cultivation. The
others also are of interest for gardening.
C. abchasicum (Medw. ex Kusn.) Kolak.
Caucasus (western regions). In mountain meadows, on rocky
slopes, in humus and on limestone soil.
Plants 10-20 cm. Tuber 1.5-4.0 cm diam., flattened-globose,
dark brown, lying about 15-20 cm below soil surface. Leaves
long-petiolate, blades ovate-cordate, acuminate, entire, 6 cm x
5 cm; with white-silver spots above and carmine or red beneath.
Flowers 2.0-1.5 cm, white or pink with dark violet spots at the
base. Varies very much in flower colour. V - late autumn to mid
summer. Fl - in the wild December-February. Fr - May. P - by
division or by seed. Flowers in 3-4 years. Does well in light
shade and on well-drained soil. Well suited for the rock garden,
for spring decoration and also for pot production. Z 5 (4). New.
C. adzaricum Pobed.
Caucasus (southwestern regions) and Asia Minor. In mountain
forests, among shrubs on slopes.
Differs from the previous species in its large tuber (9-11 cm
diam.) and rounded leaves with green-silver spots above and
green-reddish bebeath. Flowers white with three violet stripes.
Requires light shade and well-drained soil. Good for the rock garden,
can be grown as pot plant. Z 6 (5). New.
C. circassicum Pobed.
Caucasus (western regions). Grows on the rocky slopes.
Differs from the other species in its rounded-cordate leaves,
with big white spots above, green beneath. Flowers white with a
dark violet spot. Fl - winter to early spring. Requires well
drained soil. Well suited to the rock garden and gravelly slopes.
Z 6 (5). New.
C. colchicum (Albov) Albov.
Caucasus (western regions). In rocky places, on gravelly slopes
and on limestone soil in the subalpine zone.
Differs in its rounded-denticulate leaves without silver or white
spots. Flowers pink, with dark pink spots at the base. Requires
limestone soil and a sunny position. Well suited to the rock garden.
Z 6 (5). New.
C. elegans Boiss.
Caucasus (Talysh). In beech forests, on rocky slopes.
Differs in its triangular leaf blades dark green above and red
beneath. Flowers large, pink, with violet spot at the base. Good
for the rock garden. Z 6 (5). New.
C. purpurascens Mill.
In parks and gardens around Kiev (Ukraine), in the Mediterranean
and in Central Europe, in oak forests.
Differs in its carmine-red flowers that appear in autumn (August
to October). Does well in zone 5.
All species are propagated by seed and grow well on light soil,
in semishaded places.