Tete a Tete

April 19, 2008
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I may be mistaken, but I always thought that a well-grown Tete a Tete should have two or more florets. Isn’t that why it’s a Div 12 and not a Div 2? ( That’s probably also the reason it was given its very appropriate name.) The cultivar is similarly vexing for me as it is for other growers, with a two-headed version appearing only very infrequently. But until the cultivar is reclassified as Div 2 (and perhaps renamed “Right Angle” in honor of its super pose), I plan to show it, and expect it to be judged as a Div 12. To quote the Handbook, page 90, “The ideal form for a flower is determined primarily by the division to which it belongs.” To be sure, there follows on page 91 some fudging language about cultivars with multiple florets, but I’m not sure how it applies in this case. I guess maybe I should move to either Holland or Lake Wobegon, where I could expect all Tete a Tetes to be above average.

4 responses to “Tete a Tete”

  1. Donna Dietsch says:
    Bob,
    Sometimes the easy solution is to dig and replant it frequently.  Every other year seems to do it for me.  The other soution is sometimes to plant it deeper than you usually would for the size of the bulb.  The bulbs will not multiply as much and will get larger thereby giving you the two headed bloom.
    Donna Dietsch
    Columbus Ohio 
    Bob Huesmann < title=> wrote:

    I may be mistaken, but I always thought that a well-grown Tete a Tete
    should have two or more florets. Isn’t that why it’s a Div 12 and not a
    Div 2? ( That’s probably also the reason it was given its very
    appropriate name.) The cultivar is similarly vexing for me as it is for
    other growers, with a two-headed version appearing only very
    infrequently. But until the cultivar is reclassified as Div 2 (and
    perhaps renamed “Right Angle” in honor of its super pose), I plan to
    show it, and expect it to be judged as a Div 12. To quote the
    Handbook, page 90, “The ideal form for a flower is determined primarily
    by the division to which it belongs.” To be sure, there follows on page
    91 some fudging language about cultivars with multiple florets, but I’m
    not sure how it applies in this case. I guess maybe I should move to
    either Holland or Lake Wobegon, where I could expect all Tete a Tetes to
    be above average.

  2. Lina Burton says:

    Bob,

    This is interesting. I have two clumps of Tete-a-Tete, from bulbs bought at the same time from the WDS sale table in 2002.  I planted three of them on the east side of our house (soil with a lot of compost in it) and the other three on the west side of the house (soil with some sand, less compost). The clump on the east side of the house always gives me single blooms. The clump on the west side of the house always gives me double blooms. As to depth of planting?  Don’t remember — they’ve been down way too long and need to be divided this year.  Could it be the difference in the soil?  Or the ones on the east only get morning sun, to about 1:00 while the ones on the west get sun from late morning (about 11:00) on?  I don’t know, but it is an interesting difference in bulbs bought and planted at the same time in two different places.

    Lina

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  3. Naomi Liggett says:

    Doesn’t seem to matter what exposure or soil my Tetes have they still usually have very few scapes of more than one floret.  SIngle florets have better form.  I don’t think the bulbs have been previously forced.  They were replanted last fall.

    Jumblie also throws a lot of single florets.  Had a vase of three in CODS show yesterday.

    If showing in a collection I try not to use a single floreted one unless desperate.

    Naomi

  4. Hein Meeuwissen says:

    May on the side of the house where the sun is you will find( more heat)
     more double heads
    .
    Some people in Holland select there lot of tete a tete on multi- headiness.
     
     When you plant early you will find less flower on a pot,  flowering in begin January then when you store the bulbs till , say February and plant then for flowering. in April. If you store the tetes right you can plant them in summer here and you can find stems with more then 4 flowers.
    Pity they won’t last long in high temperatures.
     
    Hein Meeuwissen, Voorhout, Holland.