Lachenalia "Romaud"

Michael Mace
Tue, 18 Feb 2014 19:00:19 PST
Chad wrote:

> I am really interested in trying to get something 'new' from seed - has
anyone had success harvesting seed from these?

Those are nice plants, Chad!

As Tim pointed out, many bulbs are self-sterile, but you don't know for sure
until you try. It's easy to pollinate Lachnelaia -- just cram a little soft
paintbrush up into the flower, twirl it around, check to make sure you're
getting some pollen on the brush, and then repeat the process on other
flowers. Some Lachenalias have anthers that stick out of the flower ends,
others keep the anthers inside. Give it a try and see if your plants make

If pollination is successful, small seed pods will form inside the flowers
after they fade. When the plant goes dormant, the flower stalk will wither
and dry out, and the seed pots will open. The pods are often very tiny, and
hidden inside the dried remains of the flowers, so look carefully.
Lachenalia seeds look like tiny shiny black balls with a little black
appendage on them -- kind of like the bomb Dick Dastardly would set off in
an old Dudley Do-Right cartoon.  

Anyway, the seeds are easy to spot, and easy to grow.

If you don't get seeds, obtain some other Lachenalia species this summer and
cross them. There are some good commercial sources listed on the PBS Sources

They cross pretty easily, and you'll get flowers in about three years from

Have fun!!

San Jose, CA

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