Sauromatum venosum (voodoo lily)

I purchased these tubers originally from Van Bourgondien's from their wholesalevoodoobig.jpg (47088 bytes) catalog back in 1978.  They were listed as tropical plants requiring zone 10.  I live in zone 7a but am not always very conscientious about bringing plants in to safety in October.  I was surprised the following spring to see them come back stronger with a few seedlings.  They've continued to come back every year since then.  They seed themselves and have multiplied into groups of 10 and 20.  I've given several away and yet have them coming back each year.  Some have apparently been spread by local critters and are coming up in remote corners of the yard.

     
After a long time, they've created a dense bed, reliably returning every year once the weather warms up: Before the leaves develop, the larger tubers produce a bloom.  You can see flies exploring this bloom.  The bloom smells like something that would attract those flies.  Fortunately, that smell lasts one day and one day only. This larger collection was mislabled as Sauromatum giganteum.  It's clearly not S. giganteum but rather just a giant form of S. venosum.  The largest leaves are twice the size of those in the other bed.

 

 

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