January 23, 2011

Rare Bulb Progress

The Brunsvigia bosmaniae, which bloomed for me this last September, has the most amazing leaves that stay pressed to the ground. I make sure that it receives the brightest sunshine, as it sits in a damp sand bed near the glass.
A Strumaria unguiculata enjoys the January sunshine under glass

Strumaria unguiculata, a very rare bulb from the northern part of the Cape in South Africa, has formed a nice large leaf, which is normal for this tiny bulb. One can expect two leaves, which will die in spring, and then the spicy scented white floral scape will emerge after a dry, hot, summer rest in September.
Cyclamen trochopteranthum has a name, longer than its flower. 

The mottled foliage is very different than any of the other Cyclamen species. I know, the label is misspelled above, but this tiny Cyclamen is precious and is rarely seen outside of collectors greenhouses. Native to a limited area in sout-west Anatolia, Turkey, this bulb blooms in the middle of the cyclamen season, which fills a gap for me between Cyclamen hederifolium and C. coum.

Clinanthus, Stenomesson or Eucrosia, what ever this is, it's finally going to bloom!

Perhaps my rarest bulb, a Clinanthus variegatus formerly Stenomesson pearcii ( Stenomesson variegatum?). This is a bulb which is related to the Amaryllis, but this is from Peru and Bolivia, high in the Andes. Lost labels happen, but since this is finally sending up a bud I am glad that I saved it. If this is actually Clinanthus, the flower will be yellow and green, and pendulous since I think the original label was Stenomesson viridiiflora. Either way, it will be a precious surprise for me. The genus Stenomesson was re-classified as Clinanthus recently. Of course, it might be a Eucrosia species too. Time will tell. I brought thin indoors since the cold temperatures ( -10F tonight) makes me nervous about something going wrong with the greenhouse heater.
The winter blooming Tulbaghia cominsii has a very fragrant flower, which only smells at night. I love to bring stems indoors in the winter, because the scent of cloves will fill a room.

8 foot icicles, anyone? They are about to touch the ground.


  1. Those iclicles look fantastic against the wall, but I would n't want to be under one if it fell.

  2. It's wonderful to see all your bulbs growing so well. I look forward to seeing how your Stenomesson-like bulb turns out.

    Just a note, Stenomesson was actually split by Meerow into two genera, Stenomesson and Clinanthus. There are still some valid Stenomesson species. The easiest way to tell what is a Clinanthus is that the leaves are totally linear (the leaves are the same width along their entire length). Stenomesson (along with Phaedranassa, Eucrosia and some others) are petiolate (and are more spoon-shaped.


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