Monday, February 10, 2014

Hymenocallis littoralis

 Hymenocallis littoralis (Amaryllidaceae) 
 This is a fairly common bulb and is a very hardy plant for warm gardens from the tropics to temperate regions. It originates from Mexico and Guatemala and forms a clump of leaves to 90cm or more under favourable conditions. Mine are growing in poor dry stony soil which provides testament to its toughness.They receive the full blast of hot western sun in the afternoon. Ideally however they could be positioned under trees in semi shade or even in heavy boggy soil as they tolerate seasonal, ie summer, waterlogged soils as well as dry.
The flower has a lovely structure. The virginal white flat cupped shaped flower quivers in the slightest breeze while the extended scaffolding structure of stamens have nodding filaments on their tips. However it is the scimitar like outer petals which command the most attention as they change during the heat of the day to tentacles as on a jellyfish as they wilt.
Propagation is by division of established clumps. 

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