Favorite White Flowered Bulbs--TOW

Mary Sue Ittner msittner@mcn.org
Wed, 29 Dec 2004 20:45:17 PST
Dear all,

I was surprised at how long my list was getting when I started thinking of 
all the white flowered bulbs I grow and like. I was reminded of Joyce 
Miller's statement in the PBS membership booklet, "never ask a mother which 
child is her favorite" and the comment someone made about the one in bloom 
being the favorite at the moment. I came up with 15 genera and a lot more 
taxa. I will try to limit myself a bit.

Calochortus has to get my vote as a genus and I am unable to limit it to 
one species when albus, tolmiei, umbellatus are in the running along with 
some of those exquisitely marked Mariposas: venustus, vestae, superbus and 
wonderfully hairy umpaquaensis.

I agree with Nancy that Triteleia lilacina is wonderful. It is probably my 
favorite Triteleia.

I love Erythronium californicum. I don't think that is just because it took 
so long from seed to bloom and it is my first Erythronium to bloom from 
many different seed lots although that could be part of it. The leaves are 
wonderful and the flowers intricately beautiful too.

Going on what is in bloom now catching my eye I'd have to add Massonia 
pustulata, a form with really pustulate leaves and long stamens, and Oxalis 
versicolor which on a warm day is such a bright statement and on a cooler 
day has those wonderful red markings as it is all curled up. I've added 
some current pictures of my Massonia to the wiki:
And replaced a picture of the red markings from last year with a new one 
taken recently of Oxalis versicolor:

I never thought I'd be nominating a rain lily and a common one at that, but 
Zephyranthes candida is hard to beat with masses of bloom that goes on for 

Honorable mention goes to some of the white Lachenalias like L. 
orthopetala, to Moraea atropunctata, Onixotis stricta, Spiloxene capensis 
and Allium hyalinum. There are some great white Crocuses and Narcissus too.

Mary Sue

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