Three varieties of Cyrtanthus tuckii?

Three varieties of Cyrtanthus tuckii?

Observation - Three varieties of Cyrtanthus tuckii? - Southern Africa. Description: An isolated patch (170 by 20m) at Midmar dam had ~30 individuals with 19 specimens being observed, with some missing data. Brief statistics: plant size (m = 277mm, s = 54mm, n = 13), flower size (m = 49mm, s = 10mm, n = 19), inflorescence between 5 and 1

An isolated patch (170 by 20m) at Midmar dam had ~30 individuals with 19 specimens being observed, with some missing data. Brief statistics: plant size (m = 277mm, s = 54mm, n = 13), flower size (m = 49mm, s = 10mm, n = 19), inflorescence between 5 and 12 flowers with stems (green = 9, brown/purple =8 , red=1). The bracts that were not withered were either red or pale green. Only one out of 16 showed any leaves.There is no plausible alternative to the C. tuckii id in Howick.

Some individual observations:-

  1. Midmar 1. Nearly red base and only slightest amount of yellow/green in lobes.
  2. Midmar 2. One of the most spectacular examples of ambiguity in identification with marked yellow bases and marked green lobes.
  3. Midmar 3. Mildly yellow base but strongly yellow lobes with trace of green.
  4. Midmar 7. Shows a variation of base from mildly yellow to strongly yellow with a hint of green in the tips. The bracts are not green either.
  5. Midmar 8. Shows very yellow bases but virtually no hint of yellow green in the lobes.
  6. Midmar 9. Very green tips and yellowish bases.
  7. Midmar 10. Nearly red bases and red lobes.
  8. Midmar 16. Red throughout with only small yellow flecks at the lobes and a variable amount of pale yellow at base.
  9. Midmar 19. Almost red bases and nearly red lobes with only hint yellow/green.

There are three varieties of C. tuckii namely tuckii (yellow at base), transvaalensis (plain red) and viridilobus (flower lobes green) (Pooley:KZN p40). The observations are not consistent with three distinct varieties. It looks more like natural variation in the yellow base and green tips being present in variable amounts.

The short answer to “Three varieties of C tuckii?” is no.

Cyrtanthus tuckii, Dicotyledons, AMARYLLIDACEAE, Indigenous, Cyrtanthus, Least Concern