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Cyclamen graecum

  

I think with the latest split of this species it now is confined to the Greek mainland and many of it's islands. It’s outstanding feature are the leaves, highly variable and often beautiful.

More about Cyclamen graecum

Currently I have only C. graecum ssp. Graecum (ie no candicum) as far as I know). Cyclamen graecum is similar in many ways to C.hederifolium it is another autumn flowering species. One oddity, it’s spent flower stalks coil from the bottom / middle as the seeds develop.

It’s reasonably easy in the greenhouse where it likes the warmth of the summer sun in dormancy. Old books used to talk about “baking” Cyclamen graecum (and several other bulbs) and I think this led people to believe they need to be allowed to dry right out. This is a mistake, they do need some moisture, they have thick roots that come from the tuber and if those are allowed to dry out the plant can be severely weakened. 

The colour of the flowers vary from mid pink to dark pink and there is a white variety. 

The leaves vary but are usually strikingly patterned with various shades of green and silver. There are also several all silver forms. 

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Cyclamen graecum is rightly prized for it's beautiful leaves.

Cyclamen graecum in the Wild

Many years ago I came across thousands of these plants on the Greek island of Spetses. Generally they were growing in light pine forest or in rocks. Unfortunately not many were in leaf and the photo quality is poor but they give a feel of the flower shape and colour variation in the wild. The ones in leaf were growing in a drainage ditch and the autumnal rains had just started.  I also saw a number of plants growing in rocks and low walls just below the Parthenon in Athens.