Wednesday, October 22, 2008
We got these flowers from our aunt in Pontian, and they have kept alive but not always thrived – with no help from Gambit as a puppy, who liked to dig up everything! They have got better recently and started to bloom more often.
I managed to identify the variety quickly in Plants for Tropical Landscapes, which is one of the books I have. It’s a good one as it has pictures for all the plants, and is organised according to categories – with basic information on each plant – preferred conditions, and growing pattern.
It grows very attractive flowers which last a long time when cut and put in water (by a long time I mean two days, which is maybe not so long when I think of it – but they keep their shape and colour nicely).
It’s a Zephyranthes candida; also known as Zephyr Lily, Fairy Lily or White Rain Lily. Like the Calathea Lutea it is also originally from South America. It’s an annual in the northern climes, but over here it grows all year round – we have it in a wide round pot, but I suspect it is not deep enough as the flowers/green stalks don’t stand up well. The book and others sites recommend light shade, which may explain why ours never grows that well – I think before it had too much shade, and now it may have too little, being in front of the house.
WW decided to transplant some to under the frangipani tree – maybe it will be better there although there is not so much shade there either. As you can see, they grow from bulbs.
Always water in transplanted plants well – as my mother taught me. WW also chops off the stalks to promote growth in the roots while it’s settling in.
It will hopefully add a burst of colour under the tree – further updates in a month or so, I guess :)
There are also different coloured varieties of this flower – Zephyranthes grandiflora (purple), and Zephyranthes citrina (yellow). I can imagine that mixing these up in a flower bed could be very nice.