Jane McGary
Sun, 22 Jun 2003 08:16:38 PDT
Liz asked,

>I have just one little pot of B. californica and it keeps blooming and
>blooming and blooming.  A real little energizer bunny.  Is this the norm for
>the genus?
>Liz W

I think so. The flowers are waxy in texture and thick in substance, and 
they seem to draw their moisture from the long, succulent stems and 
pedicels. If they become detached at ground level, flowers can keep opening 
for some time. I don't know if they would ripen seed, but certainly if you 
pick stems with green capsules, they ripen quite well in the house without 
water. Often brodiaeas (or their relatives) are the only flowers to be seen 
in dry fields in California or eastern Oregon. This suggests using them as 
cutflowers, and certainly the big showy ones like B. californica, B. 
elegans, or Triteleia peduncularis would be handsome in arrangements. 
Dichelostemma ida-maia is good for "artistic" or "modernist" arrangements 
with its often contorted stems and exotic floral shape.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon

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