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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Friday - July 23, 2010

From: Houten, Holland
Region: Other
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources
Title: Source of native Desert Lily for The Netherlands
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I am searching a bulb of Hesperocallis undulata. Do you know where I can get/buy this bulb I hope you can help me. Thank you very much warmest regards The Netherlands

ANSWER:

Somewhat to our surprise, Hesperocallis undulata (desert lily) is in our Native Plant Database. We restrict our activity to plants native not only to North America but to the place they are being grown.  Please follow the plant link above to see where this plant natively grows, which is the desert in the southwestern United States. We have never been to The Netherlands, but we have been to countries nearby, and we are pretty sure you don't have deserts there, at least not like our deserts. Even if we find you a source (and we will try) we can't guarantee either that a supplier would ship it to you or that it would survive. As you can see from this USDA Plant Profile, it is native only to California, Nevada and Arizona. In those states, it is native southeastern California, southeastern Nevada and western Arizona, one large desert that crosses state lines. There is also the possibility that shipping this bulb out of the United States is prohibited. Some of the worst invasive plants and insect pests that are in the United States were shipped in as ornamentals before we became aware of the dangers. We would not want to do that to you with one of our natives. 

This website BajaInsider.com has an article on the habitat of the Hesperocallis undulata (desert lily). If you search on the Internet for the scientific name, you sometimes will find advertisements for the sale of plants, bulbs or seeds. However, we didn't, so we are going to narrow our search by choosing a city in that area, and going to our National Suppliers Director, searching on Tucson AZ which is in the area where this plant grows, and got this list. If this list does not work, go to our National Suppliers Directory, and type Tucson AZ in the "Enter Search Location" box and you will get the list. Just about every business you find there has a web address, and you can try them to see if you can find someone who can send it to you.

From our Native Plant Image Gallery:


Hesperocallis undulata

Hesperocallis undulata

Hesperocallis undulata

Hesperocallis undulata

 

 

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