From: "diana chapman" firstname.lastname@example.org wrote: >Since with most California geophytes the >foliage has pretty much withered by the time >the plant is in full bloom, it seems to me that >by the time seed is developing the plant must >draw nutrients from the bulb or corm. >Otherwise, the green stem would have to provide, >through photosynthesis, all the starches and >sugars needed for the developing seed. Maybe >that's possible, but since Calochortus and the >Brodiaea group produce a lot of seed, it seems >unlikely. Interesting point. This response for ALLIUM only. I have found that many allium, in the species that have true bulbs rather than rhizomes, that the flower stems are often virtually dehisced from the bulb at the flowering stage. This is particularly true of dryland American alliums, and among certain sections of the genus Allium. If one where to cut off a flowering allium stem at early anthesis, placed in a vase, and keep for weeks, you might be surprised to find that it continues to develop, and some viable seed will be produced. Apomixis is in evidence with a number of Allium species, needing no cross fertilization to make seed. In many species of Allium, the gone-to-seed stem detaches and pulls off the bulb almost immediately. So, for allium, I think I could generalize and suggest that leaving the drying flower stem and foliage has no beneficial effect for the bulb, in Allium species that have true bulbs only. None of these comments apply to rhizomatous sections of the genus, or those species that have a combination of bulb and rhizome. Mark McDonough Pepperell, Massachusetts, United States email@example.com "New England" USDA Zone 5 ============================================== >> web site under construction - http://www.plantbuzz.com/ << alliums, bulbs, penstemons, hardy hibiscus, western american alpines, iris, plants of all types!