Polyxena/Massonia sp.?

J.E. Shields jshields104@insightbb.com
Mon, 04 Nov 2002 08:00:58 PST
Hi all,

Thanks to Mary Sue and to Robin Attrill for all the helpful pointers.  The pictures in Terry Smale's article in the June, 2002, Bulletin of the Alpine Garden Society are helpful, as well as some of the notes.  I've sent a couple pics of it to the Bulbs_Images list.  The accession number in my database for these plants is #515, regardless of what genus they eventually land in.

I think a salient point in favor of Massonia may be that the leaves on these plants are up to 112 mm wide this year.  On the three biggest plants, the wider leaf was 95 mm, 110 mm, and 112 mm.  I wonder if this doesn't make Polyxena less likely?

Note in the images that the tepal segments are strongly recurved -- actually pretty much curled up like a watchspring.  The pictures I've seen of Polyxena ensfolia have shown erect, straight tepals.  the only bloom so far on my Daubenya NOT! looked very much like a tinuy version of the picture of P. ensifolia in Terry Smale's article.

Oh yes, and in case the images I sent to the Bulbs_Images list don't show it, the pollen is blue.

I am looking forward to bloom soon on two bulbs of the pustulate form of Massonia jasminiflora that I got from Charles Craib a couple years ago.

Besides any other uncertainties, the young age of these bulbs and the weak winter sun here (compared to South Africa or Southern California) are doubtless contributing to non-typical appearances.

Jim Shields
in central Indiana

Jim Shields             USDA Zone 5             Shields Gardens, Ltd.
P.O. Box 92              WWW    http//http://www.shieldsgardens.com/
Westfield, Indiana 46074, USA                   Tel. +1-317-896-3925

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