Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:58 pm

Bushy Bulbine Bulbine abyssinica (Geelkatstert, Wildekopieva)
Order: Asparagales. Superfamily: Xanthorrhoeacea. Family: Asphodelaceae

Image © Sharifa
Mountain Zebra National Park

Description
Bulbine abyssinica is a succulent, perennial herb which grows in small clusters. Growing from 40 to 80 cm. The soft, dark green leaves are erect or arching, linear, grass-like and up to 350 mm long. Several dense, many-flowered, spike-like inflorescences are formed from a cluster of plants during spring. The inflorescence lengthens as the flowers open and can become up to 0.8 m tall. The bright yellow flowers are star-shaped with bearded stamens and mature from the bottom of the inflorescence, with about ten flowers open at a time. The stalks of the old flowers and fruit are straight and project at almost right angles from the central axis of the inflorescence. Mature fruits are black, ± 4 mm in diameter and often covered with the faded perianth (flower petals) persisting as a cap.

Distribution
Bulbine abyssinica occurs from the Cape further north to Ethiopia. Provincial distribution in South Africa: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

Habitat
It favours rocky grassland and shallow soil overlying rock, but can also be found in woodland and along seepage areas. It frequently forms small colonies.

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:59 pm

Bulbine possibly Bulbine sp. nova
Order: Asparagales. Superfamily: Xanthorrhoeacea. Family: Asphodelaceae

Image © Lisbeth
Umtamvuna Nature Reserve, South Coast KwaZulu-Natal

Bulbine is a genus of succulent plants with flowers borne in lax or compound racemes. Erect perennial herbs. Roots wiry or fusiform. Leaves subterete or flattened, glabrous or ciliate on the margins, ± fleshy. Inflorescence a many-flowered raceme. Bracts membranous, persistent. Pedicels not articulated. Flowers bright yellow. Perianth segments free, all 1-nerved. Filaments densely long-hairy. Ovary sessile. Capsule subspherical to oblong-ovoid. Seeds pyramidal, sharply 3-angled, sometimes winged.
Worldwide: 50 species in tropical and S Africa with a few in Australia.

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:16 am

Blue Crocus Babiana patersoniae Bobbejaantjie
Order: Asparagales. Family: Iridaceae

Image
Bontebok National Park

Description:
The name is derived from bobbejaan — a baboon, because this animal is particularly fond of the corms of this plant. A small perennial herb. Babiana patersoniae L.Bolus is a winter grower. Flowers are white to pale blue to mauve with the lower lateral tepals partly cream-colored to yellow with darker red to purple markings near the base.
Plants 150–250 mm high. Stem suberect, usually with 1–2 short branches, velvety. Leaves sword-shaped, firm, pleated, closely hairy. Spike erect, 2–5-flowered; bracts green with dry brown apices, lightly hairy, 12–30 mm long, inner slightly shorter to ± half as long as outer, divided to base. Flowers zygomorphic, white to pale blue to mauve, lower lateral tepals partly cream to yellow, with darker red to purple markings near base, usually strongly scented of cloves, especially at night; perianth tube nearly cylindric, lightly flared in upper half, 20–30 mm long, tepals subequal, dorsal 16–25 × 8–11 mm, lower tepals joined to upper laterals for 1–2 mm, 15–22 mm long. Stamens unilateral; filaments arched, 8–12 mm long; anthers 4–5 mm long, blue to blackish, linear to ± arrow-shaped with connective expanded below, pollen cream. Ovary hairy in upper half; style dividing between base and middle of anthers, style branches ± 4 mm long, with prominent, spathulate tips.

Habitat:
Found on clay slopes.

Distribution:
South African endemic: Western Cape, Caledon to the Eastern Cape.

Links: Babianas - Botanical Society of South Africa

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:16 pm

River Lily, Common Vlei Crinum Crinum macowanii (Boslelie, Rivierlelie)
Order: Asparagales. Family: Amaryllidaceae

Image © Heksie
Kruger National Park

Description
Crinum macowanii is a deciduous, summer-growing bulb. The bulbs are large, 60–250 mm in diameter, with perennial fleshy roots. The leaves are large, variable, up to 1 m long and 20–200 mm wide, bright green to bluish green, fleshy and strap-like with undulating margin. Leaves rising from base, arching over to touch ground at tip.
The flowers are large, bell-shaped, strongly sweet-scented, white lilies with dark pink stripes, produced in umbels of 5 to 25 flowers on the tip of a long stalk, up to 1.1 m tall. Anthers horseshoe-shaped, attached at middle, dark-coloured, conspicuous. Flowering season is early summer (October to December). Flowers sweet scented. The fruit is a capsule of 3–6 irregularly shaped large (±20 mm diameter) smooth, pale green to silvery, fleshy seeds or occasionally up to 20 small seeds.
Crinum macowanii is easily separated from other similar Crinum species by the black anthers.

Distribution
Crinum macowanii is a variable and widespread species, native to South Africa and east Africa to Ethiopia. It occurs in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Free State, Mpumalanga, Gauteng, Limpopo and North-West, and in Namibia, Botswana, Angola, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Mozambique and further northwards to east Africa.

Habitat
It grows in many habitats, such as vleis, mountain grassland, seasonally flooded grassland, savanna, deciduous woodland, beside rivers and along the coast, and in various soils, such as gravely soil, shale or sandy flats.

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Sat Mar 22, 2014 9:25 pm

Sand Lily Crinum buphanoides (Sand lelie)
Order: Asparagales. Family: Amaryllidaceae

Image
Kruger National Park, S119, 17.11.2009

Description
Bulbous plant to 30 cm. Flowers white keeled with red. This species has very large spikes of stellate, lightly scented, white to palest, pale-pink flowers, up to 50 in a large head. The anthers on these flowers are red-purple and make a lovely contrast. Leaves ensiform, firm in texture, broad and folded, and are arranged in 2 opposite rows, leaves broad at the middle, tapering gradually to the point, ciliate on the edges with minute lanceolate scales. Peduncle moderately stout.

Distribution
Not endemic to South Africa. Provincial distribution: Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga. Widespread in Kruger National Park and Lowveld.

Habitat
Shallow sandy or gravel soils, flood plains. Semi arid tree savannah with hot wet summers and mild dry winters.

Links: Jo Onderstall: Sappi Wild Flower Guide

Image © leachy
Kruger National Park

Image © okie
Kruger National Park, right next to the road between Orpen and Satara

Image © arks

Image © arks
Kruger National Park, Talamti area

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Sun May 04, 2014 9:28 pm

Karoo Lachenalia Lachenalia violacea (Karooviooltjie)
Family: Asparagaceae. Subfamily: Scilloideae

Image
Lachenalia violacea glauca, Namaqualand 8.10.2012

The very variable and diverse genus Lachenalia consists of approximately 110 species and is endemic in Southern Africa.

Description
A cormous perennial that grows to heights around 20 cm. Lachenalia violacea is morphologically one of the most variable species in the genus. It flowers late winter into spring. Small violet-coloured flowers are borne in many-flowered, cylindrical racemes on long pedicels. The flower has a short, nodding corolla tube, coloured green, white and blue or purple. The yellow anthers are well exserted, seen here to be just shorter than the white style in the centre. Blooming occurs from midwinter to early spring. The flowers produce a heavy coconut scent.
Two varieties are recognized within the species, var. violacea and var. glauca .
Lachenalia violacea violacea is the most variable of the two, with leaves varying greatly in colour and markings depending on origin; certain forms have bright green leaves which are unmarked, and the margins are not undulate, whereas other variants have glaucous leaves which are spotted and have conspicuously undulate, crisped margins. It has deep violet or purple inner tepals.
Lachenalia violacea glauca differs in that its flowers are a uniform greyish-magenta, without this colouring on the inner tepals, and it is generally a less robust plant than var. violacea. One or two broad, ovate, wavy leaves are produced annually, sometimes with dark markings along the surfaces. This variety occurs in the Springbok, Kamieskroon and Clanwilliam districts.

Distribution
Lachenalia violacea has a wide distribution in South Africa, extending southwards from the southern Richtersveld throughout Namaqualand and the Knersvlakte to Clanwilliam district.

Habitat
Lachenalia violacea is found in various habitats, but often in rocky places. its distribution extending from the southern Richtersveld throughout Namaqualand, the Knersvlakte and as far south as the Clanwilliam.

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Sat May 10, 2014 4:05 pm

Painted Petals, Kabong Lapeirousia fabricii
Order: Asparagales. Family: Iridaceae

Image
Namaqualand 8.12.2012

Description
An extremely long-tubed perennial, 15-25 cm. It has ribbed linear leaves and flowers in short spikes on a branched stem. The cream to pink long tubed flowers often have a hooked tooth appendage and red markings on the lower tepals. Flowers are flushed pink on the back.

Distribution
South African endemic; Northern Cape, Western Cape (from Namaqualand to Worcester).

Habitat
Fynbos, on stony sandstone and granitic slopes.

Links: John Manning: Field Guide to Fynbos

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Sun Jun 15, 2014 5:21 pm

Common Hedgehog Lily Massonia depressa (Bobbejaanboek)
Order: Asparagales. Family: Asparagaceae. Subfamily: Scilloideae
(Also treated as the family Hyacinthaceae)

Image
Namaqua National Park

Description
Bulbous perennial to 5 cm with 2 flat leaves that are sometimes blotched with green or maroon. Flowers clustered between the leaves, deeply cup-shaped below, with a tube at the mouth, green or yellowish to white or pink, anthers large. The flowers emit a yeasty aroma, and produce a thick jelly-like nectar.
Massonia depressa has been shown to be pollinated by rodents, including two species of gerbil.

Distribution
From Namaqualand through the Karoo into the Eastern Cape.

Habitat
Clay and sandy flats.

Links: John Manning: Field Guide to Fynbos

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Sun Jul 13, 2014 8:38 pm

Bush Lily, Clivia Clivia miniata miniata (Boslelie)
Order: Asparagales. Family: Amaryllidaceae

Image © Duke
Walter Sisulu National Botanical Gardens, Johannesburg

Description
Evergreen clump forming perennial with dark green, strap shaped leaves which arise from a fleshy underground stem. The flowering heads of brilliant orange, trumpet shaped flowers appear mainly in spring (August to November) but also sporadically at other times of the year. The strap-shaped leaves deep green shiny leaves are a perfect foil for the masses of orange flowers. The flaring, funnel-shaped flowers of Clivia miniata are adapted to pollination by butterflies.

Distribution
Endemic to southern Africa (Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Swaziland), from Barberton to Kei mouth.

Habitat
Native to damp woodland habitats. Scarp, mistbelt and coastal riverine forests, in loose rocky habitats in light or partial shade, 100-1400 m.

Re: Africa Wild Flower Book - Order Asparagales

Tue Jul 15, 2014 4:02 pm

Bushman Poison Bulb Boophone disticha
Order: Asparagales. Family: Amaryllidaceae

Common names: century plant, poison bulb, sore-eye flower (Eng.); perdeskop, seerooglelie (Afr.); Kxutsana-yanaha, Motlatsisa (Se Sotho); Incumbe, Siphahluka (Swazi); Incotho, Incwadi (Xhosa, Zulu); Ibhade (Zulu)

Image

Wherever you live in South Africa, in a summer or winter rainfall region, along the coast or in a semi-arid area, try the sore-eye flower in your garden, as it is a most rewarding bulbous plant.

Description
This is an attractive, deciduous bulbous plant with a thick covering of dry scales above the ground. The large, round heads are sometimes on such short stems that they appear to grow directly from the bulb, almost at ground level. The colour of flowers varies from shades of pink to red and are sweetly scented (July to Oct.).
The pedicels (flower stalks) elongate after flowering to form a large seedhead. This breaks off at the top of the scape (stalk) and tumbles across the veld dispersing the seed.
The greyish green leaves are erect, arranged in a conspicuous fan and are usually produced after flowering. This spring-flowering species will flower even if it does not receive any water in winter. The bulb is very poisonous.

Distribution
Boophone disticha is widely distributed in all provinces of South Africa and tropical Africa. The genus comprises of five or six species and is distributed throughout southern Africa to tropical Africa, but B. disticha is the most widespread and occurs mainly in summer rainfall region.

Name and historical aspect
The name Boophone is derived from the Greek bous, ox, and phone, death, referring to the poisonous properties of the bulb. The specific name disticha means leaves erect in a fan shape.

Ecology
The large, round, sweetly scented flowerheads attract bees and flies, which pollinate the flowers. The plants also receive visits from ants.

Uses and cultural aspects
Boophone disticha has many medicinal uses, for example the Bushman once used the poison for their arrows, and traditional healers use it to treat pain and wounds. Parts of the plant are used by certain African tribes and also by some Europeans to cure various ailments. The outer covering of the bulb is applied to boils and abscesses. Fresh leaves are used to stop bleeding of wounds. The plants are known to be poisonous to cattle and sheep. The name sore-eye flower refers to the fact that if a person is exposed to the open flowers in a confined space; it may lead to sore eyes and even to a headache.