Friday, May 20, 2011

Spectacular Sprekelia

This Sprekelia is one of my favorite plants. It's also known as an Aztec Lily or Jacobean Lily (Sprekelia formosissima).

But it's not really a lily at all.

Sprekelia
is a small genus of only two species in the Amaryllidaceae family from Mexico. So, it's more like an Amaryllis.

Mine are about 16 inches tall and grow very well in dappled shade with some afternoon sun. They take a normal amount of water (whatever's normal for Central Texas!) I do water them -- they are not drought tolerant.

Once they've bloomed in late spring, the foliage just disappears completely in the summer, like other spring bulbs.

The plant does not set seed and its flowers are sterile.

They grow slowly, though. I'd love to share, but my cluster of them hasn't expanded much over the last 6 or 7 years that I think I've had them, so they aren't ready to be divided. (Or, I'm not yet ready to divide them)

The are right outside our breakfast room window, so I get to look at them every time I eat or work at the table, and they are in front of the birdbath, so it's a lovely sight.

I love all the plants in my garden (well, most of them). But there are a few favorites that bring special joy, and my Sprekelia are among them.