A mystery bulb

Michael Mace michaelcmace@gmail.com
Fri, 14 Jan 2011 12:01:26 PST


PBS was contacted by Owen Robinson, who recently inherited a pot of bulbs
among his grandmother's belongings.  He wondered if we could identify the
bulbs for him.  I'll let Owen explain:




I can't recall what the flower is but I do have a photo of the bulb above
the soil and leaves.  All my gardening books and most stuff online just
shows the flower which is why I thought I'd try you folks.  If your members
can help that would be great but in not, maybe I'll have to wait to see what
it does.


The link to the photo is as follows.



The bulbs were my grandmothers and probably have been around for 15 years or
more. No idea where or when they were bought. The bulb is about 2-3" in
diameter and the leaves grow to 18-24" above the bulb.  I thought they might
be amaryllis but the leaves are totally different.  They grow in a layered
pattern up from the bulb a ways before branching out a various heights. The
plant is in a window that gets direct sun from sunrise until after lunch.  I
haven't been around the plant frequently until this year so I don't know
when/if it blooms but it started producing leaves in late September (perhaps
coincidentally shortly after I started watering it - so perhaps the timing
this year is meaningless). One noticeable feature is the top of the bulb and
lower part of the "stem" of leaves are covered with layers of thin material
similar to garlic bulb covering.




Any ideas on what grandma was growing?





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