Lachenalia Species Four

Lachenalia is a genus with bulbs in the Hyacinthaceae family found in Namibia and South Africa. There are around 110 species (80 of those are found in the Cape region.) Most of these have a dormancy period and grow new roots each year. Lachenalia species J-N are found on this page.

Lachenalia A - Lachenalia B-C - Lachenalia Species D-I - Lachenalia O-P - Lachenalia Q-T - Lachenalia U-Z - Polyxena - Lachenalia index

Lachenalia juncifolia Baker is found in sand or limestone outcrops in the winter rainfall Cape. It has two leaves with maroon bands and white or pink bell shaped flowers on long pedicels with exserted anthers. Don Journet describes it in his collection. "The flowers consist of outer perianth segments which have a blush tinge at their base grading to pink and finally a rose-purple tip and gibbosities. The inner segments, which are largely hidden, have the same dark rose-purple tips showing between the outer segments. The flowering season has been fairly short for me being third week in September to second week in October." Photos below by Mary Sue Ittner shows the leaves and the flowers.

Lachenalia juncifolia leaves, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia juncifolia, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia juncifolia, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia juncifolia, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia juncifolia, Mary Sue Ittner

Lachenalia juncifolia var. campanulata W. F. Barker is a synonym of Lachenalia magentea.

Lachenalia karooica W.F.Barker ex G.D. Duncan is native to rocky outcrops, and loamy to clayey soils in the Northwest Cape (Worcester district and Great Karoo to western Free State.) Plants are small from 4 to 22 cm high with 1 to 2 lanceolate leaves that lie on the ground and often have dark spots on the upper surface. Flowers have no stalks, and are bell shaped and light green to turquoise green with maroon or brown markings. Anthers are exserted. Plants are winter growing and winter to spring flowering (June to September). Photo from the book Plants of the Klein Karoo courtesy of Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok.

Lachenalia karooica, Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok

Lachenalia karoopoortensis G.D.Duncan, syn. Lachenalia elegans var. flava W.F. Barker, was named by Graham Duncan in 2012 when he elevated the Lachenalia elegans variety to species level. There was already a species with the name Lachenalia flava so he selected a new name. This is a small species growing from 13 to 25 cm high and flowering early July to mid August. It is restricted to the Southwestern Cape. It usually has one leaf (rarely two) with dark green blotches on its upper surface and a maroon crisped margin. Flowers are without pedicels and bright yellow with shorter inner tepals and maroon markings with bright white margins. Stamens are included. Photo by Rod Saunders

Lachenalia karoopoortensis, Rod Saunders

Lachenalia kliprandensis W.F. Barker from Kliprand (southwestern Bushland) South Africa, where it grows in red sand, has two ovate prostrate leaves with dark brown or green pustules on the surface and white flowers with brownish green gibbosities and pale magenta tips. Inner segments are white with broad magenta tips. This species resembles Lachenalia carnosa. The first two photos by Mary Sue Ittner of plants grown from Silverhill Seeds and the last from Alan Horstmann.

Lachenalia kliprandensis leaves, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia kliprandensis, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia kliprandensis, Alan Horstmann

Lachenalia latimerae W.F.Barker is uncommon in its distribution from the Little Karoo (Oudtshoorn to the Kouga Mountains) to the Eastern Cape where it grows mostly in the shade of shrubs . Plants are winter growing from 15 to 30 cm high with 1 to 2 narrow erect leaves with clear purple spots on the lower leaf surface. Flowers are stalked, mauve-grey to pale pink, bell shaped with greenish brown markings. This species flowers late winter to early spring (July to September). Photo from the book Plants of the Klein Karoo courtesy of Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok.

Lachenalia latimeriae, Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok

Lachenalia liliflora Jacq. is from hilly slopes in the renosterveld in the southwesten Cape and blooms in spring. The bell-shaped flowers have short pedicels and are white with brownish markings and magenta tips. It is one of the later flowering species. Photo 1 was taken by Alan Horstmann, photos 2-3 by Mary Sue Ittner, and photos 4-5 by Nhu Nguyen.

Lachenalia liliflora, Alan HorstmannLachenalia liliflora, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia liliflora, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia liliflora, Nhu NguyenLachenalia liliflora, Nhu Nguyen

Lachenalia longibracteata Phillips is found on clay flats and slopes in the northwest and southwest Cape. It has shortly pedicellate or sessile flowers that are bell-shaped. Each flower has a long bract at the base. The flowers are pale blue or yellow with a blue base and brown or green markings. Flowering in the wild is from July to September. The anthers are included. Photos by Alan Horstmann and Rod Saunders

Lachenalia longibracteata, Alan HorstmannLachenalia longibracteata, Rod Saunders

Lachenalia lutea G.D. Duncan, a species named in 2006, grows in heavy clay soil in renosterveld in the southwestern cape and has greenish yellow oblong-campanulate sweetly scented flowers without pedicels and with anthers included. Growing from 16 to 24 cm high, it flowers July to October. Photo by Colin Davis.

Lachenalia lutea, Colin Davis

Lachenalia luteola Jacq., syn. Lachenalia tricolor Thunb . var luteola (Jacq.) Baker, is one of the seven species that until 2012 were thought to belong to Lachenalia aloides. It 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. Some of the distinctions in morphology between the seven species are very subtle and because the flowers change color in different stages and the ones in cultivation may have hybridized deciding which photograph belongs to which species is a challenge. The first photo from Bob Rutemoeller of plants grown from seed is challenging to identify. It could also be Lachenalia callista or Lachenalia thunbergii. The second photo from Colin Davis was received as Lachenalia tricolor but could also be Lachenalia callista. The last photo from Nhu Nguyen was thought to be Lachenalia quadricolor but fits the description of one of the forms of this species as well.

Lachenalia sp., Bob RutemoellerLachenalia sp., Colin DavisLachenalia sp., Nhu Nguyen

Lachenalia magentea G.D. Duncan, syn. Lachenalia juncifolia var. campanulata W. F. Barker, was elevated to species status in 2012. It is confined to the southern Cape coastal belt where it grows in colonies in shallow seasonally moist sand. It differs from Lachenlia juncifolia in its smaller, oblong-campanulate flowers and in its grooved channeled lengthwise less fleshy leaves. It flowers August to October. Don Journet described it in his collection as flowering for a relatively short period in late September and early October. Also: "It has open bell shaped flowers that although rather small, are never the less very attractive. The flowers are almost white with the main colour being in the rose purple gibbosities and keel on the inner perianth segments. The bulbs are generally very small, only a few millimetres in diameter, and are easily overlooked when sorting through the potting mix at the end of the season. The leaves are semi-terete and can be mistaken for grass by the less experienced collector.

Lachenalia mathewsii W.F. Barker is found only on the South African Cape west coast on moist lower slopes. It flowers in spring (September) and is yellow with green markings. Plants grow from 10 to 20 cm, and flowers are shortly pedicellate with anthers exserted. Photos by Mary Sue Ittner.

Lachenalia mathewsii, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia mathewsii, Mary Sue Ittner

Lachenalia mediana Jacq. grows in clay soil in the northwest and southwest Cape. Flowers are pale blue and white or pinkish blue, with green or purple markings and bell-shaped with short pedicels. Anthers are included. Photo by Alan Horstmann

Lachenalia mediana, Alan Horstmann

Lachenalia membranacea (W.F.Barker) G.D.Duncan was elevated to species level from Lachenalia elegans var. membranacea W.F.Barker by Graham Duncan in 2012. It has flowers that are pale or dark yellow to green with green and brown markings and a white membranous margin and 1 to 2 lanceolate spotted leaves. Growing from 11 to 25 cm, it flowers from July to September. The photos below may be this species. Photo 1 taken by Mary Sue Ittner in the bulb room in the conservatory at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden. Photo 2 was taken by Nhu Nguyen at the UC Botanical Garden.

Lachenalia membranacea, Kirstenbosch, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia membranacea, UCBG, Nhu Nguyen

Lachenalia multifolia W.F. Barker is found in rocky slopes in crevices in the Tanqua Karoo and the Roggeveld. It has many grasslike leaves and pedicellate, cream colored widely bell shaped scented flowers with exserted anthers. The tips of the tepals are light green and brown. It resembles Lachenalia liliflora and sister species Lachenalia orthopetala. It flowers September to October. It takes 4 years to bloom this species from seeds. Photos taken by Nhu Nguyen.

Lachenalia multifolia, Nhu NguyenLachenalia multifolia, Nhu NguyenLachenalia multifolia, Nhu Nguyen

Lachenalia mutabilis Sweet is found on sandy and stony slopes in the north and southwestern Cape and Namaqualand. There are many forms of this species. Growing from 10 to 45 cm high, this species has a single lanceolate erect leaf with crisped margins. Flowers are narrowly urn-shaped, blue with yellow tips or yellowish green with brown markings. Flowering is from July to September. It is distinguished by having a number of sterile flowers on the apex. Photo 1 taken by Mary Sue Ittner, shows plants growing in the wild between Clanwilliam and Citrusdal. Photo 2 was taken by Cameron McMaster in the Overberg.

Lachenalia mutabilis, Mary Sue IttnerLachenalia mutabilis, Cameron McMaster

The photos below are of plants in cultivation. Photo 1 by Bob Rutemoeller shows a form grown from seed by Mary Sue Ittner. Photos 2-3 show the same form as photo 1 grown by Nhu Nguyen. Photo 4 shows plants grown in California by Michael Mace. Photo 5 by Bob Rutemoeller is of a dwarf form that was grown by Alan Horstmann in South Africa.

Lachenalia mutabilis, Bob RutemoellerLachenalia mutabilis, Nhu NguyenLachenalia mutabilis, Nhu NguyenLachenalia mutabilis, Michael MaceLachenalia mutabilis, Bob Rutemoeller

Lachenalia namaquensis W.F. Barker is found in Namaqualand in exposed rocky habitats and has urn-shaped striking magenta flowers which are quite eye catching. The outer perianth segments have a tinge of blue at the base but then shade through a pink magenta to a deep magenta at the tips. The gibbosities are magenta and green. The magenta inner segments protrude beyond the outer segments and flare out adding to the colour mass. Description by Don Journet. The first photo was taken by Bob Rutemoeller. The second was taken by Andrew Harvie northwest of Steinkopf in Namaqualand.

Lachenalia namaquensis, Bob RutemoellerLachenalia namaquensis, Andrew Harvie

Lachenalia namibiensis W.F. Barker is an attractive dwarf species from southwestern Namibia with white bell shaped flowers with pink markings. It flowers in August. Photo by Alan Horstmann.

Lachenalia namibiensis, Alan Horstmann

Lachenalia nervosa Ker Gawl. (syn. Lachenalia latifolia Tratt.) grows on coastal grassland in the southern Cape and has two leaves that are sometimes pustulate with longitudinal veins and bell-shaped white flowers with reddish pink markings and exserted anthers. The first two photos from Bob Rutemoeller are of flowers and leaves. The last two were taken by Cameron McMaster in Napier in the Overberg.

Lachenalia nervosa, Bob RutemoellerLachenalia nervosa, Bob RutemoellerLachenalia nervosa, Cameron McMasterLachenalia nervosa, Cameron McMaster

Lachenalia A - Lachenalia B-C - Lachenalia Species D-I - Lachenalia O-P - Lachenalia Q-T - Lachenalia U-Z - Polyxena - Lachenalia index

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