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Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

Posted by christinmk z5b eastern WA (My Page) on
Fri, Jan 24, 14 at 21:33

Anyone have experience growing this guy? The hardiness ratings for it are all over the map. My wholesale catalog lists it at a z3, while several reviews say it needs to be overwintered indoors even in z5! Then there are the sites that say it is more of a z7/8 plant. Grrrr...

Do you find it to be reliably hardy in z5 or not? Is it truly a non-invasive oxalis? Do you have it in full sun and is that preferable to a shaded site?
CMK


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

I'm sorry, I dont have much to contribute but I'd also like to hear from people that grow it! My mother brought me home two little baggies of 'Iron Cross' bulbs and I simply planted them like the directions said without any special treatment and nothings happening...best way to get these going? I also tried a pot of them in the unheated mini greenhouse to see if the cold from winter will help them come up in spring....
~Michael


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

I cannot help with the hardiness issue, but I do know that they are not invasive, unlike others of their tribe.
Here in the Mediterranean, we have a massive problem with the South African Oxalis pes-caprea. It has taken over the entire island of Crete.
When I moved in to this little house, I waited a whole year before planting to make sure I had eradicated all of it from my garden. Huh... I need not have bothered. It has seeded back in from the surrounding area and is now a nightmare.

My daughter sent me a mixed box of bulbs from England last September including Oxalis Iron Cross.
It is strange, but even though I know that they are not invasive, I cannot bring myself to plant them in the garden.
I planted some in pots and they were up and flowering by November. They are lovely, very pretty. Now they have finished flowering, I am looking at the pots of very attractive foliage, wondering what to do with them.
I still cannot bring myself to plant them out in the garden.
Completely irrational I know.
Daisy


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

  • Posted by dbarron Z6/7 (Oklahoma) (My Page) on
    Sun, Jan 26, 14 at 10:05

I also planted them in zone 6b to 7a, and they didn't overwinter.


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

-Daisy, I feel your angst in planting other oxalis. Over here O. corniculata is a real pest. Last year I was kind of tempted by an O. rosea offered at a local plant sale, but chickened out. LOL.

-dbarron, thank you for your comment on hardiness! I was a little suspicious of my catalog hardiness rating....
CMK


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

They have overwintered here for maybe 10 years & multiplied somewhat, not aggressively. I will be looking for them this spring, our temps have gotten below 0 several times this year. We've been in the single digits since they have been planted, & there was a reduced number of them the following year, this might be the year they don't come back.


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

-ngraham, appreciate the info. Do you have yours in a sheltered or open situation? If you have the time, would you maybe post again come spring and let us know if they survived?
CMK


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

I'll try & remember to let you know. They are always late to show up, so will be a while, I'm thinking late May. If I forget, you might shoot me an email to remind me. I have several different varieties, none have been aggressive for me, & a couple I don't expect to return this spring. Mine are fairly close to my house, but on the north side & unprotected by shrubs or larger plants.


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

-ngraham, many thanks! ;-)
CMK


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

Sorry to be so late in my reply. I had 4 different varieties of oxalis, including Iron Cross. Iron Cross was the first to show up this year, but not til mid July. We had an exceptionally harsh winter, I had given up on it. Another variety with bright pink flowers showed up just a couple of weeks ago. The purple leaf variety showed up just a couple of days ago. All are much diminished from last year. I think I'm going to pot the last 2 varieties up for the winter, they were so late to show up, & we usually get our first frost mid October. We're having cooler weather earlier than normal though, so who knows.


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RE: Oxalis tetraphylla 'Iron Cross'

  • Posted by dbarron Z6/7 (Oklahoma) (My Page) on
    Fri, Sep 19, 14 at 9:39

So it sounds like they're barely hardy in your zone and/or you have them planted deeply? (just a guess)
Typically oxalis grows barely below the surface (or even 1/2 on top)...but in that sort of exposure, Iron Cross would certainly die (I think). I'm thinking some parts of yours were below the freeze damage line, and sprouted (finally) above the soil.


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