Colchicum question

Angelo Porcelli
Fri, 03 Jun 2005 12:23:35 PDT
I would spend a couple of words on that suspected Colchicum byzantinum of my photo, particularly on bulbs and leaves. I planted a single bulb years ago and it was left in place unmolested. I was given it from my mother's aunt and it's one of those passed-along plants of the old gardens, although not so common. Last year I decided it was time to split the clump and with my big surprise I found bulbs of a size I had never believed. Most of them were the size of an apple, with the classic 'heel' sideway and for sheer curiosity I weighted the larger which was 260gr (9 oz). 
Leaves are supported from a kind of pseudostem (or neck) up to 15cm long, which give the plant a miniature Crinum moorei looking. Leaves themselves are long up to 40cm and 15cm large and when totally developed cause the plant to bend sideway on the ground. From a couple of years I have discovered this plants make seeds, but just every blue moon and in spite of the hundred of flowers, I find only 1 or 2 seed per plant and only on the very big ones. Last fall I hand pollinated many flowers but I found pollen to be very scarce and anthers appeared dried even on freshly open flowers. 

Hope this help
Angelo Porcelli
south of Italy

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