Schizanthus, or Butterfly Flower, or Poor Man’s Orchid P H N
Solonaceae:  Schizanthus pinnatus (X wisetonensis)
Schizanthus
Schizanthus, 2003
2016
April 12: I put some Angel Wings seeds in vermiculite to germinate.
24: Many sprouts. I put 1 sprout into each of 27 cells.
 

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2014
April 11: I put a pinch of seeds from 2010 in vermiculite to germinate.
27: I got only 3 weak sprouts and they have all died now.
May 4: I scattered 10 Hit Parade seeds in 9 cells.
June 20: A few small plants are now growing in the raised bed.
 
2013
May 2: I started some seeds in vermiculite.
10: I transferred 18 sprouts into cells of soil.
June 22: I set out the last of my approximately 14 seedlings.
September 23: Did fine. I collected seeds.  
2012
March 28: I went to clean and store my saved seeds and found mouse droppings and no seeds! I guess a mouse ate them every one.
April 16: I started some of the 2008 seeds in vermiculite.
21: Sprouts.
September 19: I tried raising the seedlings outside, but the winds were too much for them.
 
2011
April 4: I started 18 cells, using soil mix with vermiculite and soil mix on top and seeds collected last summer. I watered with No Damp, as the seeds are rather dirty.
May 27: I set my seedlings out. They are a good size, not too big and not too small.
 
2010
January 5: I started 2 tubs of seeds in vermiculite. One tub has seeds from 2005, and the other seeds from 2008. I don't know where the seeds I harvested last summer are! The tubs are on a high shelf in a basement cupboard.
10: The seeds from 2008 have sprouted, but not the 2005 ones.
12: The seeds from 2005 are also up now.
19: Still in vermiculite. I gave them No-Damp today and moved them from the windows to under the fluorescent lights.
29: Transplanted into cells.
February 25: Doing fine. I snipped the tops of the main stalks off to encourage branching.
28: I transplanted 28 of them into 3 inch square pots.
March 12: I finished transferring the rest into large styrofoam cups..
26: I snipped the leaders off again.
31: Outside in the shade for a while today. This turned the leaves a darker green.
April 2: Put under the sodium lamp as there was no space for them above.
14: I started setting some of them outside during the day, for the cool temperatures.
May 23: They mostly have a few flowers at the top, and are otherwise fairly thin. I set them out into the garden.
June 17: Doing poorly in the garden.
 
2009
March 29: I sowed many seeds from 2004 and 2008 in a tub of vermiculite. I am leaving the tub upstairs.
April 3: One sprout last night, and many this morning.
10: I transplanted the seedlings into 27 cells. There are also some remaining in the vermiculite. I watered them with No Damp and 10-52-10 fertilizer.
July 4: Coming along fine in the garden. One is flowering.
August 3: It has flowered nicely, and is just starting to end.
24: I collected seeds for next year.
 
2008
March 15: I started 18 cells with seeds from 2004 and 2005. I put them on the floor of a basement cupboard to germinate.
20: I found sprouts just making an appearance and I put them under the lights. I think it had been quite cool on the floor in that cupboard.
24: Thinned to 2 plants per cell.
31: Thinned to one plant per cell.
May 16: I set out half of my plants and transferred the rest into styrofoam cups. The plants are long, more like vines than upright plants. I didn’t want to set any of them out this early but they are frequently drying out and going limp in their tiny cells and I think taking this chance is right.
24: I set out the rest of my plants.
December 31: They did fine.
 
2006
January 3: I transferred 8 sprouts to cells.
5: Only 2 healthy sprouts remain. I guess I transferred them too soon.
March 21: None of the earlier plants remain. Today I planted 18 cells, using seed from 2000, 2004, and last year.
April 1: No sprouts, so today I started a tub of seeds in vermiculite. I covered the tub so almost no light can get in.
2: 3 tiny sprouts in the cells. I covered the paks with aluminum foil to exclude light, but opened the foil over the 3 cells that had sprouts.
5: 2 sprouts in the tub.
5: 20 today. Vermiculite seems to be the way to go.
10: I put 9 in cells.
May 24: I set out about 17 plants.
August 1: Most died. About 6 lived and flowered. July was extremely dry.
 
2005
March 29:  I sowed 18 cells of soil mix using seed from 2000 and put them in the basement cupboard to germinate.
April 2:  Sprouts.
19:  Thinned.
25:  I started another 18 cells.
25+:  I remembered them after too long and they were long and thin when I brought them out. They seem to be surviving, growing, and strengthening though.
May 26:  I set the first batch outside.
28: I thinned the second batch. They are coming along fine.
June 2:  I set out 9 extras in the asclepias bed.
17:  I set out my last 9 near the Shirley poppies.
19:  The weather has been cloudy and rainy so the plants are stunted, small but with mature-looking leaves.
July 2:  1 plant is in flower.
27:  Flowering nicely. Some plants are done and some are near their peak. The plants did not grow together as they usually do.
December 21:  I started about 10 Star Parade seeds in vermiculite. These are intended for pots.
25:  3 sprouts.
 
2004
Jan 17:  I started 18 Star Parade seeds on top of vermiculite in a basement cupboard.
21:  There were 3 sprouts, with their roots going sideways so I sprinkled more vermiculite on top.
25:  8 sprouts, so I put them under lights.
27:  I planted 13 sprouts into 12 cells.
March 14:  2 plants are growing.   I moved them under the fluorescents as they seemed to be burning under the bright sodium lamp.
17:  I started 18 cells with 18 seeds of Hit Parade.
20:  I discarded the last, nearly dead, Star Parade plant.
21:  I moved 9 cells of sprouts under the fluorescent lights.
22:  I moved the other 9 cells too.
April 18:  I seeded 18 cells of the later batch and put them into the cupboard.   The earlier Hit Parades are doing fine.
24:  I remembered the seeds, and found many tall sprouts.
May 24:  I set my plants out, 9 from the early batch and 9 later ones.   I still have a few.
May 27:  I set out the rest.   They are small and battered from the rains they have been in.
June 23:  They are doing well, generally, and one has many flowers.
July 31:  They put on a tremendous show in July, but the blossoms are fading now and I have cut a few back to their bases, hoping for a second show.
 
2003
March 20:  I seeded a 9-pak, with multiple seeds from the Angel Wings packet and of seeds collected in 2000.   I covered the seeds with a fine mixture of peat moss and soil, and left them in the basement near the floor.
23:  I seeded another 9-pak.
24:  Some sprouts poking through.
25:  About 20 sprouts.
26:  The seeds in the second pak are sending out roots.   I put them under the lights.
April 1:  Thinned and transferred to have 1 or 2 in each cell.
16:  I started 3 6-paks for later flowers.
20:  Some sprouts.   I put one 6-pak under the lights but left the others in their plastic bag.
May 22:  I set out all plants, the smaller ones between the larger.
June 16:  One plant is flowering.
July 28:  The flowers have become fewer.   I have cut about half of the plants back to their bases.
August 26:  There was no regrowth.
December 9:  Seeds arrived from Stokes, one package of Hit Parade, $2.15, and one package of Star Parade, $2.50.
 
2002
March 16:  I seeded 2 9-paks, with multiple seeds of Angel Wings and of seeds collected in 2000.   I covered the seeds with a fine mixture of peat moss and soil, and put one pak in the piano room and one in the basement cupboard, in order to test whether or not they have to be sprouted in the dark.
19:  One sprout, upstairs, in the evening.
20:  Many sprouts, upstairs, in the evening, and almost as many downstairs.   The upstairs sprouts are a little ahead of the downstairs ones.   Of course, it is a little warmer upstairs.
April 14:  I started 2 more paks, upstairs, and divided the plants I already had, giving 29 plants.
19:  Sprouts.
25:  Thinned.
May 21:  I set out all the larger plants.
24:  A hard frost last night seems to have harmed most of them..
28:  I set out all my smaller seedlings where the larger ones had been.   Perhaps one or two of them will send up new growth from their bases.
September 8:  There was a good display early in the summer, but not much recovery after I removed the mature growth.
 
2001
May 2: I started some seeds, most of Lindberg's Angel Wings, some of my own from 2000, and a few from 1999. They went onto peat moss in a basement cupboard.
May 5: Many tiny shoots. Put under lights.
May 19: I planted the tiny seedlings in the garden.
June 18: None left.
 
2000
March 18: I planted nine cells of Angel Wings schizanthus, with several seeds per cell, and 9 cells of seeds collected last year. I dusted vermiculite over the seeds, then watered it down, then put them in the dark in a basement cupboard.
22: I moved the Angel Wings out of the cupboard as there were enough tiny sprouts, but I left the cells using seed from last year as there were fewer sprouts.
23: I moved the other pack into the light, although there did not seem to be any more sprouts.
April 16: I started 9 more cells of Angel Wings.
April 17: 9 more cells today of 1999 seed.
20: I removed the Angel Wings from the cupboard. There are not quite enough sprouts in the other cells yet.
21: I removed the other cells today.
May 21: I set out about 28 plants, fairly dense in their area.
June 15: First flower.
July 14: Their bed is a mass of blossoms.
August 7: Just a couple of days ago, they were still lush with blossoms and beautiful, but today the blossoms were sparse, and I cut away most of the plants and set them out to dry.
13: I collected enough seeds today for next year
 
1999
March 18: I planted my seeds today, nine cells of Angel Wings schizanthus, with several seeds per cell. I dusted vermiculite over the seeds, then pressed it down.
22: There are sprouts today.
31: I thinned them to one per cell.
April 15: I sowed 9 more cells, in the same way.
18: Oops, I just remembered that schizanthus sprouts in the dark! I put them by a window. I will move them today . The seed package I have today doesn't say anything about keeping them in the dark, and there was one seed visibly sprouting on the surface when I moved them into the cupboard.
20: There are a few sprouts today. I will leave them in the dark another day.
21: There are sprouts in 8 of the cells. I put them under the lights.
24: I thinned the sprouts to 2 per cell.
May 4: I planted the first batch out.
8: I set the second batch out. The first batch have not done well. Some of them are ok, but some have limp stems, or stems that have been bent at their bases. Maybe the recent winds have been too hard on them. I need more plants than I have for the planned area; I must grow more next year.
24: The plants are surviving.
June 12: First flower. The plants look fine.
June 30: Flourishing. Some plants are covered in flowers!
August 3: Most plants are almost completely finished. I have pulled up 4 plants so far, to collect seed from.
14: 3 plants are still in flower. Perhaps they are from the late-seeded group.
31: Finished.
 
1998
January 19: I planted about 40 seeds of Angel Wings in starter mix, and about 30 self-collected seeds of Hit Parade in soil and starter mix.
24: Both sprouted well.
~February 1: Angel wings to 4 6-paks.
14: Hit Parade the same. Hit Parade is larger, but transplanting may be more stressful.
March 14: A 9-pak started.
April 16: The early plants are dong well, but some, especially the Angel Wings, are leggy. Assiniboine Park Conservatory says they cut theirs back about twice to force them to be short. The March seedlings are small. Growing them cool seems to make them spindly. I started 1 more 6-pak of Angel Wings today. Oh yes, 2 of the early plants started to flower at the top where they were near the fluorescent tubes.
19: Seeds sprouting.
25: Outside for 1/2 hour, and window closed now. Trying to make them flower.
26: 15-36-10.
May 16: Not quite flowering yet. The Hit Parades are much stockier than the Angel Wings. The 4 inch round pots were closer to flowering than the square ones.
June: Flowering beautifully in the garden. Later batches are doing fine there too.
~August 31: They were lovely in the garden. The later batches replaced the early one in a timely way.
 
1997
March 2: About 12 seeds started.
16: 10 seedlings transplanted, and about 30 more new seeds planted.
21: 18 new seedlings transplanted.
~May 1: I put the largest plants into 3 inch pots, and outside. I put 10 plants into the planter, outside.
24: Replaced 3, planted 15 in the garden, and gave 12 away.
June 11: A few flowers, in the garden, the box, and the pots.
June 25: The pots are magnificent, the box, good.
August 7: The box plants died about 3 weeks ago. The garden plants still look good, but are tiring.
 
1996
February 17: I started my seeds of Hit Parade from T&T today.
24: About 8 tall thin sprouts.
March 11: The original 9 sprouts transplanted well. There are more new ones.
May 13: My plants are generally tall and a little spindly. A conservatory gardener says this can be prevented by growing them in cool conditions.
31: Set out.
July 9: Magnificent in the garden.
mid-August: They are almost all finished.