Ornithogalum--PBS TOW

Alberto Castillo ezeizabotgard@hotmail.com
Mon, 02 Dec 2002 07:54:42 PST
Ornithogalum is a genus of plants with bulbs, leafless stem, leaves linear 
to lanceolate to oblanceolate, inflorescence a raceme, ovary superior, six 
free tepals, six stamens, fruit a capsule, seeds black, flat . It belongs 
into the family Hyacinthaceae. This genus has very many species but is 
practically unknown in cultivation except for the yellow and orange species 
of group A. The group C in particular has a number of striking species , 
small compact plants with rather large flowers, excellent for pot 
cultivation. The flowers of all have a silky texture that is very attractive.

 From the cultivation point there are three distinct groups

A)The autumn-winter-spring growers from S. W. South Africa. They are mostly 
Spring bloomers.They demand intense sunlight and rather frost free 
conditions. Dry summer dormant. Tender
B) The spring-summer-autumn growers from hot subtropical to tropical 
Africa, mostly late Spring/summer bloomers. Most demand intense sunlight 
and frost free to hot conditions. Dry winter dormant. Tender
C) The autumn-winter-spring growers from the countries around the 
Mediterranean Sea, mostly Spring bloomers. They demand sunlight and cool 
growing conditions and are hardy to very hardy.

Note from Mary Sue:
Alberto has provided us with the introduction to the topic of the week. 
Several of you wanted to talk about this genus and I hope those of you who 
suggested it will ask your questions and share your experiences. Who grows 
Ornithogalum and which species? Group A? Group B? Group C? Do you grow them 
in the ground or containers? Do they come back (or come up every year?) 
Remember to include where you live. When this topic was nominated, one 
person wrote:

Ornithogalum that persist in the garden and what conditions they like.

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