Strelitzia ReginæCanna-leaved Strelitzia
- Class and Order
- Pentandria Monogynia
- Generic Character
- Spathæ. Cal. 0. Cor. 3-petala. Nectarium triphyllum, genitalia involvens. Peric. 3-loculare, polyspermum
- STRELITZIA Reginæ Ait. Hort. Kew. v. i. p. 285. Tab. 2
- HELICONIA Bibai J. Mill. ic. tab. 5, 6.
In order that we may give our readers an opportunity of seeing a coloured representation of one of the most scarce and magnificent plants introduced into this country, we have this number deviated from our usual plan, with respect to the plates, and though in so doing we shall have the pleasure of gratifying the warm wishes of many of our readers, we are not without our apprehensions least others may not feel perfectly well satisfied; should it prove so, we wish such to rest assured that this is a deviation in which we shall very rarely indulge and never but when something uncommonly beautiful or interesting presents itself: to avoid the imputation of interested motives, we wish our readers to be apprized that the expences attendant on the present number, in consequence of such deviation, have been considerably augmented, not lowered.
This plant has usually been confined to the stove, where it has been placed in a pot, and plunged into the tan, as the plants in such situations usually are; it has been found that when the roots have been confined to the narrow limits of a pot, the plant has rarely or never flowered, but that when the roots have by accident extended into the rotten tan, it has readily thrown up flowering stems, the best practice therefore, not only with this, but many other plants, is to let the roots have plenty of earth to strike into. As it is a Cape plant it may perhaps be found to succeed best in the conservatory.
It has not, that we know of, as yet ripened its seeds in this country; till it does, or good seeds of it shall be imported, it must remain a very scarce and dear plant, as it is found to increase very slowly by its roots: plants are said to be sold at the Cape for Three Guineas each.
Mr. Fairbairn, to whose abilities and industry the Companies Garden at Chelsea is indebted for its present flourishing state, being desirous of obtaining ripe seeds, I had no opportunity of examining the germen.
Such were the appearances which presented themselves to us in the plant which flowered at the Chelsea Garden; that they are liable to considerable variation is apparent from the figure of Mr. Millar, which appears to have been drawn from a very luxuriant specimen, as two spathæ grow from one flowering stem, the stigma is also remarkably convoluted, many other appearances are likewise represented, which our plant did not exhibit: in the figure given in the Hortus Kewensis, the stigma appears to have separated from the nectary on the first opening of the flower, and to be split into three parts, neither of which circumstances took place in our plant till they were both in a decaying state.