We are in a cool, rainy spell, at the same time that the Western U.S. is enveloped in a massive heat wave. After last year's heat wave in this part of the country, I am happy to settle for the cool weather. What is less certainly positive is its possible effects on my potted plants.
After a long period of neglect, my rain lily collection is getting some rejuvenation and encouragement. I had blooms on Zephyranthes atamasco and Z. simpsonii already a month ago. More recently, Z. guatemalensis bloomed and set seed, for I think the first time since I got it a decade or more ago. Habranthus tubispathus has bloomed, set seed, and is starting to bloom again. Now, Zephyranthes longifolia is starting to bloom.
Zephyranthes longifolia is native to West Texas, a hot a dry place. The leaves are narrow, 1 to 2 mm wide (0.04 to 0.08 inch), and there are about 4 leaves per bulb. The flower is light yellow and appears in summer when the bulbs are given plenty of water.
I got the original bulbs of this accession from Ray Shelton in about 1978. I think all the bulbs I have now are probably seedlings from that first batch of bulbs. I store them bone dry under a bench in the greenhouse over winter, above freezing. In summer, I put the pot outdoors in full sun, where it gets all the rainfall we get naturally plus some hand watering in between. Multiple generations of inbreeding seem to have brought at least one idiocyncracy to light: some of the flowers have their petals windmilled, like an airplane propellor.
Haemanthus humilis humilis is starting to bloom. This form is from the Eastern Cape Province in South Africa, and usually blooms in late June or early July, after the pots have been taken out of the greenhouse for the summer.
Haemanthus humilis humilis
H. humilis humilis usually has pink flowers and smooth, hairless leaves. Its sibling subspecies, Haemanthus humilis hirsutus, is from the High Veld and Drakensberg Escarpment, in Mpumalanga province in South Africa. H. humilis hirsutus normally has hairy leaves and white flowers. For me, it blooms in summer but at erratic times, anywhere from early June to late August.
Haemanthus humilis hirsutus
Ammocharis baumii are blooming again. Their first blooms ever for me were just two weeks ago. Now, rebloom scapes are growing, and one of them is showing two flowers on one scape, whereas the norm is just one lone flower per scape.
Ammocharis baumii with two flowers
Good gardening, from here in central Indiana
Look up technical terms in the Glossary of Plant Biology