Pamianthe and Leptochiton

Jim McKenney
Sat, 23 Aug 2014 09:30:23 PDT
I potted up the germinated Pamianthe peruviana seeds this morning: my lot was seven seeds and each one germinated. 

I've been looking at Pamianthe images on the wiki and elsewhere since I acquired these seeds, and something far in the back of my mind kept bugging me about the images I was seeing. Today I realized what it was, and in doing so my knowledge of neotropical amaryllids expanded by one genus. 

I learned about the genus Pamianthe about fifty years ago from the New Illustrated Encyclopedia of Gardening edited by T.H. Everett. This was published in 1960. The description there is accompanied by an illustration of something which is obviously an amaryllid, but, as I learned this morning,  not a Pamianthe.

In a happy coincidence, a friend who is downsizing dropped off a his copy of the 1976 Edition 8 of Exotica 3 a few days ago. In checking for pictures of Pamianthe I spotted a photo which is the same photo which appears in the New Illustrated Encyclopedia. But in Exotica it is labeled Leptochiton quitoensis. 

No wonder the images on the wiki were so different from what I remembered! 

Leptochiton seems to have two species, L. quitoensis and L. helianthus (this one, as the name suggests, has yellow flowers). The names are listed on the wiki but nothing more. 

Are any of you growing either of these?

Jim McKenney
Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, USDA zone 7, where it's time to get the wet bark dust from under my fingernails and get some lunch going. 

More information about the pbs mailing list