Alpine Garden Society

Ulster Group

Plant of the Month, December 2013
  Thalictrum tuberosum - by Harold McBride
Some years ago the Ulster Group went on a visit to Suffolk and Norfolk; it was a most enjoyable trip and we saw some very inspiring gardens and also experienced temperatures much higher than we usually have in Ulster !
One of the gardens visited was that of Alpine Garden Society President Rod Leeds & his wife Jane.
During that visit I spotted a large- flowered Thalictrum tuberosum growing close to the front door of Rod and Jane's "picture book" thatched cottage.
The following spring I ordered T. tuberosum seed from various seed exchanges. However the resulting plants all had very small flowers in comparison to the fine plant I had seen in Suffolk.
Some years later Rod was staying with us during a lecture visit and I asked if he would let me have some seed, which he kindly sent me some weeks later.
The Thalictrum seed was sown immediately resulting in the featured plant which is much admired by garden visitors.
T. tuberosum is found in the Pyrenees in rocky habitats, the plant gets its name from its tuberous roots. I found it some years ago when on a AGS trip to eastern Spain; however the flowers were very small in comparison to the plants back in my garden.

Thalictrum tuberosum may be grown in a raised bed or large trough, it seems to prefer a humus - rich, well drained soil.

Rarely offered by nurseries, it is forever present in AGS and SRGC  seed exchange seed lists .