Ammocharis nerinoides

Ammocharis nerinoides is endemic to northern, north-eastern and eastern Namibia where it grows in seasonally inundated river beds. The plants bloom in mid-November (summer). Flowers are very fragrant, blooms in the evening and are short lived (about 3 days). In cultivation, this species require a completely dry winter dormancy. Flowers often appear in late spring-summer (May-July). Bulbs should be planted with the top of the neck at soil level in a very well-drained medium with low organic matter (~20% organic). Give the plants full sun or at least a very bright area. Terracotta pots are choice, although plastic can be used. Water only when the soil is almost completely dried (about once every 10 days in plastic pots). Plants are self fertile and seeds mature in 4-5 weeks. Under ideal conditions, plants will flower in 4 years (Duncan 2003, 2005).

Jacob Uluwehi Knecht has found that A. nerinoides seedlings grow well outdoors in full sun in Honolulu, Hawai'i and remain evergreen year-round if never allowed to dry out. Under these conditions they are remarkably tolerant of very high humidity (70% rh+) and of high rainfall (3550 mm pa) when grown in 100% coarse horticultural pumice. Dylan Hannon reports that in Southern California A. nerinoides is a dependable species so long as it is grown in a sandy well-drained mix and kept on the dry side in winter; some autumn and even early winter rains are not harmful. Flowers appear in July. It can be expected to prosper in the warmer cismontane valleys rather than the immediate coast. As mentioned in Duncan's Grow Bulbs this species can flower in a relatively short time from seed, whereas the more popular A. coranica seems to stay in a perpetually juvenile state in container culture here and flowering seed-grown plants are rarely seen. Photos 1-6 below show material originally collected in Namibia: Gobabis District: Farm Okaseko grown and photographed by Dylan Hannon.

Ammocharis nerinoides, Dylan HannonAmmocharis nerinoides, Dylan HannonAmmocharis nerinoides, Dylan HannonAmmocharis nerinoides, Dylan HannonAmmocharis nerinoides mature bulbs, Dylan HannonAmmocharis nerinoides freshly-harvested seed, Dylan Hannon

Photos below were taken by Hans Joschko.

Ammocharis nerinoides, Hans JoschkoAmmocharis nerinoides, Hans Joschko

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Page last modified on March 27, 2014, at 06:24 PM