The Q&A Archives: acidanthera

Question: I have three varieties of bulbs--acidanthera, peacock orchid and freesia. Last season I lost their seperate identities after digging them up. Are they truly different? If they are, what is the difference so that I can properly identify them this season as they grow and flower.

Answer: I'll give you short descriptions; you might also go to the library and find an encyclopedia of plants that shows photographs or paintings of these plants. Maybe even photocopy them. Then when they come up, you should be able to differentiate betweenthem. <br><br>Acidanthera have long, strap-like leaves. The flowers have 6 petals (botanically speaking, they are called tepals), and the petals are quite pointy. A common acidanthera, A. bicolor, has white flowers with dark blotcheson the 3 lower petals.<br><br>The peacock orchid is a cultivar of the above, botanical name Acidanthera bicolor var. murieliae. It is similar in appearance and may even be the same plant. <br><br>The flowers on freesia usually face upward, and they are born on stalks that end up more or less horizontal. The petals are rounded rather than pointy.<br><br>I hope this helps!

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