Lachenalia aloides split

Lachenalia aloides (L.f.) Engl., syn. Lachenalia tricolor Thunb., was split into eight species when Graham Duncan published his book in 2012. This page attempts to distinguish between the eight.

Inner tepals 14 to 20 mm long:

Species with only one leaf:

Lachenalia patentissima G.D.Duncan is a dwarf plant growing from 8-13 cm tall with a solitary plain or spotted leaf, an erect green scape marked with purple blotches, a light green rachis, and a widely spreading perianth with bright yellow to greenish yellow flowers. It is restricted to the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve where it grow in sandstone fynbos vegetation and flowers September to October. Photos from iNaturalist taken by Jean_S and Justin Hawthorne in the end of August and in September and shared under a CC BY-NC license.

Lachenalia patentissima, Jean S, iNaturalist, CC BY-NCLachenalia patentissima, Justin Hawthorne, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC

Species with two leaves:

Inner tepals translucent white; median keels bright green, broad above:

Lachenalia vanzyliae (W.F.Barker) G.D.Duncan & T.J.Edwards. has one or two variable leaves, sometimes unmarked, but often marked purplish-brown on the upper surface. Outer flowers are pale blue to white with green or yellow-green gibbosities. The inner segments are yellow-green with white margins. Photos were taken by Mary Sue Ittner.

Lachenalia vanzyliae, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia vanzyliae, Mary Sue Ittner

Inner tepals greenish yellow to bright yellow, median keels light green, narrow throughout:

Lachenalia luteola Jacq., syn. Lachenalia tricolor Thunb . var luteola (Jacq.) Baker, is distributed in the Southern Cape peninsula and flowers August to November. Growing from 15 to 34 cm high, it is a variable species. The typical forms have greenish-yellow, yellowish-green or mustard outer and inner tepals with green markings; the top of the flowering stalk is bright reddish-orange or mustard yellow. Other forms have outer tepals that are bright reddish-orange at the base, shading to bright yellow with green markings and inner tepals that are bright yellow or greenish yellow with magenta markings. Photos from iNaturalist taken by Tony Rebelo in Table Mountain National Park in September and shared under a CC BY-SA license.

Lachenalia luteola, Tony Rebelo, iNaturalist, CC BY-SALachenalia luteola, Tony Rebelo, iNaturalist, CC BY-SALachenalia luteola, Tony Rebelo, iNaturalist, CC BY-SA

Inner tepals 23 mm or longer; outer tepals not bright red or orange-red, inner tepals bright yellow, greenish yellow, golden yellow or orange

Scape purple

Lachenalia flava Andrews grows 19 to 25 cm tall with two lanceolate leaves that can be plain or spotted. The many flowered inflorescence is racemose and erect with a dull purple to maroon or light green with large purple splotches scape. Long lasting flowers are tubular, pendulous, dark golden-yellow or orange with the apex light to bright golden orange. Stamens are included. Flower time in habitat is from July to October. Photos from Nhu Nguyen and Mary Sue Ittner.

Lachenalia flava, Nhu NguyenLachenalia flava, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia flava, Mary Sue Ittner

Scape green, plain or with brownish purple blotches

Inner tepals bright yellow or greenish yellow

Inner tepals, 23-24 mm long, apics slightly spreading

Lachenalia thunbergii G.D.Duncan & T.J.Edwards is restricted to rocky crevices along summit ridges in the Swartland region in the southwestern Cape where it grows in sandstone fynbos vegetation. Growing from 8 to 12 cm high, it has 1 to 2 lanceolate green leaves and long tubular green and yellow flowers with a reddish orange rachis. The inner tepals are 23-24 mm long with slightly spreading apics. Flowering is August to September. Photos from iNaturalist Fiona Hellmann and Riaan van der Walt and shared under a CC BY-NC license.

Lachenalia thunbergii, Fiona Hellmann, iNaturalist, CC BY-NCLachenalia thunbergii, Riaan van der Walt, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC

Inner tepals 32-33 mm long, apices widely spreading

Lachenalia callista G.D.Duncan & T.J.Edwards grows to 25 cm, flowers August to September and is distributed in a small area near Piketberg. It has two lanceolate leaves and pendulous flowers with bright yellow outer tepals flushed orange with green gibbosites and bright yellow inner tepals with green tips. It is very similar to Lachenalia thunbergii, but is taller and has longer tepals and wide spreading apices (versus slightly spreading apices). It is also very similar to Lachenalia aloides except it has green tips. Photos from Bob Rutemoeller, Mary Sue Ittner, and Arnold Trachtenberg. The first one in Gordon Summerfield's collection was grown from seed originally collected near Piketberg.

Lachenalia callista, probably, Bob RutemoellerLachenalia callista, probably, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia callista, Arnold Trachtenberg

Inner tepals with broad red, purplish red or purplish magenta apices

outer tepals 15 to 17 mm long, apices red or purplish red

Lachenalia aloides (L.f.) Engl. is restricted to granite hillsides in the Southwestern Cape, flowering early June to early August. It has bright yellow to greenish yellow outer and inner tepals with the outer tepals with green apical gibbosities and the inner tepals with broad red or purplish red apices with white margins. Photos from Nhu Nguyen and Mary Sue Ittner. The last photo from iNaturalist taken by Khuselwa Mabuyane in the Western Cape in July and shared under a CC BY-NC license.

Lachenalia aloides, Nhu NguyenLachenalia aloides, Mary Sue IttnerKhuselwa Mabuyane, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC

outer tepals 10-11 mm long, apices purplish magenta

Lachenalia quadricolor Jacq. is found in humus-rich crevices in granite outcrops in the western Cape. Growing from 9 to 20 cm, this is an early flowering species flowering in the winter (late June to mid August). Like Lachenalia aloides it has bright yellow to greenish yellow outer and inner tepals with the outer tepals with green apical gibbosities. It has a shorter perianth tube, shorter outer tepals and inner tepals that are slightly flared and deep purple magenta. Photos from Alan Horstmann and Nhu Nguyen.

Lachenalia quadricolor, Alan HorstmannLachenalia quadricolor, Nhu Nguyen

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Page last modified on April 15, 2022, at 10:55 AM
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