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Fast Facts-Alstroemeria  
 

Fast Facts-Alstroemeria

Alstroemerias, commonly referred to as Peruvian lilies, are spotted flowers that are loved by bees and humans alike. Alstroemerias are long-lived perennials similar in appearance to lilies with six tepals that are all fairly similar. However, in some varieties, two tepals are larger than the remaining four and these tend to be vividly colored so that they can serve as radar flags for pollination. There are about 50 species of in the Alstroemeriacea family which grow predominantly in central Chile or Eastern Brazil. Those from Chile are winter-growing and those from Brazil are summer-growing. Today alstroemeria is also grown in Europe, particularly in the United Kingdom and Holland, making them an extremely accessible flower found in a variety of colors and all year round. Alstroemerias have deep, thick roots and are not only favorites for gardens but are enjoyed as freshly cut flowers.

Common Name: Peruvian Lily or Lily of the Incas

Pronunciation: Alstro-MARY-ah.

Genus: Alstroemeria, named for the Swedish Clas Alströmer (Claus von Alstroemer)

Family: Alstroemeriaceae

Origin: Native to South America. Almost the entire genus is either from Chile or Brazil.

Availability: All year

Color Options: Alstroemeria comes in red, pink, orange, white, cream, yellow, salmon, peach and purple (among other colors) and are characteristically spotted or striped with contrasting colors and patches.

Grows in: South America, Europe

Care Tips: Remove all leaves and foliage before placing them in vases as leaves wilt before the flowers. Place in fresh, clean water.

Life Span: Fully opened alstroemerias have a vase life of about two weeks.

Uses: Wonderful for colorful bouquets and vibrant, cheerful centerpieces for any occasion.

Mixes well with: Lilies

Interesting facts: The leaves of alstroemerias twist from the base so that what appears to be the upper leaf surface is in fact the lower leaf surface (referred to as respuinate in the botanical world).

 

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