Here comes the blogging craze, and i am introduced to so many plants from around the world which are alien to me. Subtropical and temperate climate plants and flowers amaze me. Will you believe that i have an encyclopedia of temperate flowers, but can't have a hold of its tropical counterpart! And that is how my head swirl with this plant i am telling you.
I saw it flowering after the first heavy rains. Because i have been seeing hostas in blogposts, I just believe i have a hosta. It has the same leaf shape and flower stem as hostas. However, I cannot just call it a hosta because further readings even seem to get me out of my belief. Then I serendipitously come in contact with Lily of The Suburban Gardener. She is a lily enthusiast with lots of hosta collection. I sent her my photos for ID, which she graciously thought of either a Hosta plantaginea or a Eucharis grandiflora. I searched more and with some trepidation decided it is not a hosta, basically because it has a bulb and not stolons. Then comes Eucharis, which turned out to have lots of genus and species. I am at the dead end. Search, read, search and read again. I came across a very nice scientific literature describing Eucharis versus Caliphruria (www.jstor.org/pss/2399347). This 2nd term is really a very new term even for my subconscious. I opened my photos and completely compare it with the net photos.
It is very difficult to choose the characteristics that differ between the two. It is good i can somehow recall some technical terms from Botany class ages ago! Eucharis has curved perianth, while Caliphruria has straight perianth. This unusual term for laymen is the fused structure comprising the base of the flower, just like a petiole. Clearly, my specimen has straight perianth. Eureka...it is a Caliphruria!!! And what species it might be? Caliphruria has only 4 species, but it did not give the images for them. They are even endangered and one species is thought to be extinct. Suffice it to say i am happy calling my heirloom plant as Caliphruria sp. This is already safe! Great, i can have a steady head now. And i learned it is not endemic but from South America, how it came over? Blame it to our colonizers, the Spaniards and Portuguese, who brought a lot here including this Caliphruria.
But it doesn't mean I will stop there. Please help me give its proper identity. Thank you. I can rest in peace now! I wish Phil Gates of the digitalbotanicgarden will help me for the ID.