Scilla changes/Prospero autumnale

Jane McGary
Mon, 13 Aug 2012 18:03:51 PDT
 From several points of view other than DNA studies, the genus 
Prospero seems to make a lot of sense. I think I'm growing all 
species in it, and they do have a lot in common, including their fall 
flowering. I don't think I have any photos of P. autumnale (which 
indeed seems like it should be autumnalis!) that would be good for 
the wiki. It's one of those very slender, small-flowered plants that 
are hard to photograph. The best photo I have is a colony growing in 
roadside gravel (it's probably a "pioneer plant"). If I see some 
looking good this month I'll try again here.

Very good to hear that the other splits of Scilla are apparently not 
widely accepted. I hate making those metal labels. Not going to do it 
just to neuter Prospero.

Mary SUe wrote, "Also in that post from Julian he wrote: "no evidence 
exists to
>support the separation of Muscari", but the Plant list now recognizes
>Pseudomuscari  and Leopoldia, but not Muscarimia."

I had been under the impression that Leopoldia was long since sunk in 
Muscari (Leopoldias are the "tassel hyacinths" such as M. comosum), 
and that the former monotypic Pseudomuscari chalusicum is now the 
bizarrely named Muscari pseudomuscari. Whatever you call the latter, 
it is a real gem -- lovely light blue flowers of good substance, and 
a bulb that almost never offsets, but it's easy to raise from seed.

Paige mentioned Fessia (Scilla) gorganica. Rare in cultivation, it 
flowered for me for the first time last winter. Its more robust 
congeners are F. (S) greilhuberi, which is a good garden plant here, 
and F. (S) hohenackeri, which seems somewhat less enthusiastic. These 
are leafy plants with large mid-blue flowers that have attractive 
exserted stamens. S. greilhuberi even made it into the lawn here, 
among some random bulbs rescued from the bulb frame plunge material, 
and it seems quite happy in short turf.

Jane McGary
Portland, Oregon, USA

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