I have a problem, one shared with many NC holders: how to be sure that my specimens are true-to-type: an especial nightmare when it comes to promiscuous Aquilegias that are only propagated by seed rather than clonal material. The other NC holder, John Drake has been very knowledgeable but there remained many unanswered questions. Eventually, I decided to start an Aquilegia Interest Group in order to start answering the many questions of identity.
It started humbly as a correspondence round but as more people joined it soon became too cumbersome taking over 7 months to make the first round of 16 members. Instead we decided to form an e-mail group as only 4 members didn't have e-mail (and they've been paired up with a 'buddy' who sends them print-outs every month). Such groups make discussion easy...even between continents! Sending an e-mail automatically sends it to everyone in the group, and it's easy to reply in the normal way. Members include the two NCCPG collection holders, Ray Brown who breeds Aquilegias at Plantworld, and Bob Nold who wrote the monograph.
Interested in joining the Aquilegiachatlist? Simply add your name at the Yahoo mailing list site at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aquilegiachatlist/ If you are already a member of Yahoo Groups you'll need to remember your member name and password....if not already a member, be prepared to create these two items. Membership is free, and whilst on the site you can also browse to see what has already been written, and there are files and pictures there. If you have any problems joining, or want to ask me any questions, you may contact me. I can also send you the resumes of what's been discussed so far. Not only has cultivar identity been discussed, but labelling, sowing, growing, pests and diseases, and even the vexed question of how to define a cultivar. Subject matter is up to each one of us....just ask what you need to know.