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Transplanting, a risky operation

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Photo: Biodôme de Montréal (Andrée Nault)

Transplanting is not the best approach to promoting the species' conservation in the wild. Contrary to what you may think, mature plants that are transplanted into a new environment grow slowly and do not expand well. Moreover, it is often only through the germination of the seeds they produce that a new colony is established. Nevertheless, sometimes, the only way to save plants from a sure destruction is to transplant them. Therefore, the following information is provided for the rescue of wild leek that are otherwise destined to disappear.

In spring, of course!

As with sowing, it is strongly recommended that wild leek be transplanted in the spring. Transplant shock will be reduced if the plants are replanted soon after being dug up. Plants that are dug up in clumps inside a block of soil will be less vulnerable to drought. Even if the bulbs you dig up lose their roots, they should be able to reproduce and survive if they are intact.

Choose plots

Establishing transect lines, as described under “Sowing in plots” seems to be the best method for transplanting plants individually or in groups. A 25 cm X 25 cm plot can accommodate between five and ten plants, depending on their size. Plant with the neck of the bulb level with the soil . Planting too deeply could impede emergence. On the other hand, bulbs placed too close to the surface may dry out. It is important to cover them with lightly tamped soil, and then with a generous amount of litter. 

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