The Genus Erythronium
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- Author: Chris Clennett
- 168pp (e). 244 x 182mm. 14 botanical paintings. 60+ colour photographs. 30 maps
- Kew Publishing, 2014
Erythronium, a genus of 29 species of bulbous perennials are among of the most striking spring flowering woodland plants with their slender pendent flowers, mottled arum-like leaves. Originating in North America, Europe and Japan, many cultivars are relatively easy to grow and the genus is becoming more popular as garden plants. This, the first dedicated monograph on Erythronium, is an authoritative book for gardeners, growers and breeders and a major academic work that gathers together the latest research.
Based on detailed scientific research by the author for his PhD, a study that has included new research on the morphology and DNA of living material from almost all species, the core of the book is the detailed account of all current identified species, most accompanied by exquisite botanical illustrations and photographs. With chapters on phytogeography, morphology, cytology, and ecology and conservation all aspects of current research are explored. A key allows each recognized species to be identified. The chapter on taxonomy gives a detailed account for each species (25 native to North America). A supplementary chapter presents accounts of the naturally occurring hybrid taxa and artificial hybrids.
While some Erythronium are relatively easy to cultivate in containers and the open ground, it can be very difficult to raise high elevation species. Guidance to raising plants and ample information on many other aspects of growing are included in the chapter on cultivation.