Flora of North America, Vol 26,
Flora of North America (FNA)
Herbs, perennial, bulbose. Bulbs whitish, rarely yellowish or purplish, often stained brown, erect and ovoid (hereafter “ovoid”), irregular and chunky (“chunky”), slanted in ground and ± elongate (“subrhizomatous”), or horizontally elongate (“rhizomatous”), sometimes branching if rhizomatous, rarely if not, 1.4–11.7 × 1.3–19 cm, 0.1–3 times taller than long, annual growth usually obscure; scales (modified leaves) numerous, fleshy and starchy, usually densely covering rhizomes, rarely bearing leaf blades known as basal leaves or their abscission scars, often notched or segmented, longest 0.8–11.9 cm; roots on each bulb either contractile and concentrically wrinkled and thick (to 5 mm), or for nutrition and thinner, fibrous. Stems erect, green, sometimes purple, rarely glaucous, to 3.1 m, ± glabrous, often with adventitious stem roots above bulb. Buds usually rounded in cross section, sometimes ± triangular. Leaves numerous, usually ± evenly distributed along stem, rarely concentrated proximally, scattered or more commonly in 1–12(–24) whorls with some scattered at stem base and apex, 3–20(–40) leaves per whorl, sessile, drooping at tips to ascending, 1.7–29 × 0.2–5.6 cm, 1.6–34 times longer than wide; blade green and somewhat lighter abaxially, rarely paler, linear, lanceolate, elliptic, or obovate, sometimes oblanceolate, especially in proximal leaves, often somewhat lanceolate in distal leaves, margins entire, undulate or not, usually glabrous and smooth or occasionally slightly papillose, sometimes roughened abaxially by ± deltoid epidermal spicules, apex acute to obtuse or rarely acuminate; principal veins usually 3, usually glabrous and smooth abaxially, sometimes with ± deltoid epidermal spicules, rarely impressed adaxially. Inflorescences maturing acropetally, terminal, racemose or umbellate (in small plants), usually open, bracteate, 1–25(–45)-flowered; bracts usually 1–2 per flower, often with one lanceolate and very wide and the other linear or filiferous. Flowers pendent, nodding, horizontal, ascending, or erect, radially or slightly bilaterally symmetric, fragrant or not; perianth campanulate, funnelform, or with sepals and petals strongly reflexed in form of a “Turk’s-cap”; sepals and petals usually differentiated, sometimes indistinctly so, recurved or reflexed, distinct, orange, red, yellow, pink, or white, usually with adaxial magenta or maroon spots concentrated in proximal 1/2–2/3, ± lanceolate and narrowed or rarely clawed, glabrous (pubescent strip at base in L. lancifolium), nectaries present on each but often more developed on sepals, basal, green, usually hidden but occasionally exposed and forming visible green star at adaxial base of perianth; sepals 3, occasionally ridged abaxially, 3.1–12 × 0.6–2.6 cm, apex usually acute; petals 3, ridged abaxially, with 2 adaxial longitudinal median rounded ridges, 3–11.2 × 0.6–3.4 cm, apex usually acute, often more widely than sepal apex; stamens 6, opposite sepals and petals, distinct, included to strongly exserted; filaments ± parallel to style or spreading, diverging to 31° from flower axis, color variable but usually pale green or nearly translucent; anthers versatile, color variable, usually purplish, becoming darker, oblong, 0.3–2.6 cm; pollen cream, yellow, peach, tan, orange, rust, or brown, usually becoming lighter; pistil compound, 3-lobed, 3-locular, oblong, 2.1–10.5 cm; ovary superior, 0.8–3.5 cm, axile placentas 6, ovules as many as seeds, a few developing without embryos; style initially parallel to flower axis, usually elongating and curving toward periphery, usually pale green, round in cross section; stigma 3-lobed, hollow in older flowers; pedicel not articulate, 0.8–32 cm. Fruits erect, green maturing to brown, capsular, 3-valved, not strongly winged, ± oblong-obovate, 1.5–7.7 × 0.8–3.3 cm, 1.1–4.8 times longer than wide, base constricted, dehiscence loculicidal. Seeds 67–330, light brown with darker ovate embryo in center, 6-ranked, flattened into 60° wedge, verrucose. x = 12.