Hesperocallis undulata

Eugene Zielinski eez55@earthlink.net
Thu, 05 Aug 2010 20:46:47 PDT
Thanks, Lee and everyone else who wrote, for giving us some insight into
the growing conditions for H. undulata.  Now, I have a couple of questions.
1. What is the growth cycle of H. undulata?  Does it put up foliage in the
fall, grow through winter, and flower in the spring?  Or does it stay
underground until late winter, then quickly come up in the spring,  flower,
and set seed in a short blaze of glory?
2. A few years ago, the Mojave desert experienced exceptional winter rains
that led to an even more exceptional spring bloom.  Was the display of
Hesperocallis also exceptional?  (I suspect, based on Lee's anecdote below,
that it was.)
Oh yes -- that company out of Redwood City could be J.L. Hudson, Seedsman. 
They're still around, and they still sell Hesperocallis seed.

Eugene Zielinski
Augusta, GA
(no place for Hesperocallis)

> [Original Message]
> From: Lee Poulsen <wpoulsen@pacbell.net>
> To: Pacific Bulb Society <pbs@lists.ibiblio.org>
> Date: 8/5/2010 5:50:09 PM
> Subject: Re: [pbs] Hesperocallis undulata
> I've tried this both from seeds and from one bulb I was very lucky to 
> get one year shortly after joining IBS (a few years before PBS got 
> started).
> I got seeds from Southwestern Native Seeds (they offer it every year) 
> and from a guy who sold all kinds of plant seeds out of Redwood City, 
> California. (I can't remember his nursery's name.) I tried them in three 
> different years and always planted them in the autumn like a lot of 
> mediterranean climate bulb seeds, and they always germinated in great 
> quantities. Germinating them was never the problem. They would grow 
> through the winter outside in our South. Calif. winter rains just fine. 
> Then they'd go dormant when it got warm. But they never, ever, sprouted 
> again after that first year. Haven't tried again recently.
> I have an aunt and uncle who have some property down in San Felipe, Baja 
> California (Norte). They visit there at least twice a month over the 
> past 20 or 30 years. San Felipe gets very little rain, even in the 
> winter. In fact, a big chunk of any rain they ever get is when a 
> hurricane or tropical storm hits Baja California far enough north that 
> the remnants reach their area in what is called a chubasco. However, 
> some years ago when there was a really big El NiƱo throughout the 
> winter, lots of rain fell that winter down there. They went down one 
> weekend in the early spring and they arrived around midnight during a 
> full moon. They told me that for miles and miles, as they got closer to 
> their destination, the desert appeared to be covered with white lily 
> blooms shining in the moonlight as far as the eye could see, and they 
> rolled down their windows and the air had this heavenly scent my aunt 
> says she'll never forget. Wish I could have experienced that.
> --Lee Poulsen
> Pasadena, California, USA - USDA Zone 10a
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