June 1st, 2003
Rainlily Seeds

photo: rainlily seeds

They’re not supposed to set seeds.

by M Sinclair Stevens

One Response to post “Rainlily Seeds”

  1. From Mara (west of Austin):

    Of course they set seed! I am always grabbing seed and off them and my pants pockets are filled with them. I was picketing for a political cause and they were seeding out all over behind where I was with my sign. Now I have three flats of rain lilies. There is a yard in Deep Eddy area in Austin that has a yard full of copper rain lilies that I have been meaning to get to to collect after a rain. They are very easy to germinate. Just barely press them into the soil and keep damp. They might need to have some plants from a different parent near by to pollinate successfully, so if you are collecting, collect from different sites and mix em up. I am talking off the top of my head here. Some plants are this way, or so this guy who knows way more than I, was telling me about some native grasses. I am good at repeating what I hear.

    Mara, I should have been more precise. Even I had trouble remembering what I was talking about when I looked at this entry. You’re absolutely right, of course. Most rainlilies do set seed. However, Scott Ogden in “Garden Bulbs for the South” writes this about the large pink rainlily, Zephyranthes grandiflora “The cultivated strain of this flower is sterile and refuses to set seed.” That’s why I was surprised. I’m used to seeing seeds on my wild rainlilies, but this was the first and only time I’ve seen them on Z. grandiflora. — mss