Author Topic: Thompso and Morgan  (Read 492 times)

Peter Kohn

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Thompso and Morgan
« on: October 08, 2017, 08:31:13 AM »
I was interested to see that T&M are offering 'Luxurious Designer Poppies' in their Meconopsis 'Union Jack' Collection. One plant each of (Meconopsis betonicifolia, Meconopsis Napaulensis, Meconopsis betonicifolia 'Alba') in 7cm pots for £9.99 reduced from £35.97.

This raises a number of questions.  How can they be sure that the white plant is white ? (Our seed-raised plants from M. baileyi alba have a high proportion of blue progeny).  Are they raised by tissue culture ?  Does this explain why the plants are so small ?  And being so small, will they survive the winter ?   We have always followed James Cobb's advice, given more than twenty years ago and tried to build up large strong plants before winter. We will be selling our large, multi-crowned M. baileyi plants in 2 litre pots at our final plant sale in Sheffield Botanic Gardens this afternoon (for £5). What do others think ?

Blues Brother

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2017, 08:13:02 PM »
So potentially, all three are mis-named. And some of the future seed and/or divisions could then be re-distributed. Should the MG write to T&M and asked them to re-name?

Peter Kohn

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2017, 08:24:19 AM »
Sounds sensible though I suspect they are more concerned with using names that are most successful commercially rather than scientifically accurate. I cringe whenever I see Incarvilleas described as 'hardy gloxinias' but there is little chance of reversing this useage and getting the horticulture industry to use baileyi rather than betonicifolia will be very difficult.

Allan Jamieson

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Re: Thompson and Morgan
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2017, 12:55:36 AM »
I wouldn't bother trying to communicate with them, I've sent them a couple of emails personally over the last few years. I sent them a link to this website as an example of how Meconopsis should be named, pointing out the work that the group had done on sorting out the naming problems with Meconopsis but interest and answer came there none whatsoever!

The so called Union Jack Collection also describes the plants as being perennial, nice trick if they have found a reliably perennial napaulensis, I guess they're going to have a few disappointed customers when the red section of the flag dies off after flowering. Perpetuating the betonicifolia name isn't exactly helpful either when what they are selling under that name is actually baileyi anyway.

I can remember many years ago back in 2001 when Evelyn asked me to help with the seed trials of commercially available Meconopsis, the seeds supplied by T & M were the worst of all the ones that I tried, very poor germination and somewhat inaccurate naming. I contacted them about that at that time too and someone did reply, saying that their Meconopsis seed came mainly from growers in Germany but that was the extent of their interest in the matter.

Peter Kohn

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2017, 05:10:46 PM »
I have to agree about T&M seeds (generally, not just meconopsis). When we first started to develop the garden at Kerrachar almost everything was grown from seed. We learned to accept that not everything germinated with our one size fits all approach but with most sources of seed we expected 70% germination. (These days we expect quite a bit  better with seed we have collected ourselves but I suspect we have largely selected things that we initially grew from seed anyway). With T&M our success rate was only 30% and after a couple of years they were dropped as a supplier. That was 20 years ago. Hopefully they have improved.

IanScott

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2017, 08:20:57 PM »
I have spoken with T&M about your concerns regarding the incorrect naming of their Meconopsis and the 'perennial' nature of M. napaulensis (of hort).  I have been assured that they, and their suppliers, will update the Meconopsis names on their data-bases and reconsider their description of what is a monocarpic species.

Ian

Allan Jamieson

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2017, 11:18:44 PM »
I admire your optimism Ian! I couldn't help but notice in today's paper yet another advert for betonicifolia plants from T & M, it isn't really that they don't know the current correct Meconopsis names as listed on this website, I am very sure that they do know and have known for quite some time. I think that T & M are primarily more focused on their marketing than factual accuracy and probably to be honest most of their customers are not that interested in the names attached to the plants, just so long as the plants grow and flower well. Fingers crossed though!

poppy girl

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2017, 11:31:49 AM »
The subject came up at The Meconopsis Group meeting on Saturday 28th November. A formal letter is being sent from The Meconopsis Group. Hopefully they will take notice. A member of the general public has complained to one of the Groups nursery members that 'the nursery did not know that you CAN get a perennial red Meconopsis' ! They were not particularly pleasant and were quite insistent. They  based this on T & M information. Van Meuwen are also promoting the same  incorrect information and packs for sale. They too will be contacted. Perhaps many members should also complain so they may finally look at their mistakes!

AliceB

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2017, 02:47:34 PM »
Another approach might be to send the message to the public by e.g. writing to Gardeners’ World Magazine. There is also a web site gardenersworld.com  which has a forum. Both are associated with the TV programme. In this case mention of the actual company name might best be omitted.

Peter Kohn

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Re: Thompso and Morgan
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2017, 03:38:29 PM »
I'll have a go at that unless it would be better coming formally from the group. Gardener's World were pretty misleading about how to grow meconopsis but they did take down the offending clip after we complained.