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'*Janus' - Asiatic Hybrid Chimera Lily
Flower Description: In 1972, the film “And Now for Something Completely Different” from Monty Python’s Flying Circus made its debut; and this season, just a month shy of 40 years since that film was released—we bring you ‘Janus’! Something completely different in lilies. A chimera.
In mythology, chimeras are commonly represented as monsters sporting a lion’s head, a goat’s body, and a serpent’s tail. Whereas in the Plant Kingdom, actual chimeras are typically a single organism (in this case, a lily bulb), composed of two genetically different types of tissue. As in animals, botanical chimeras usually originate from the same zygote—an extremely rare occurrence most often due to mutation during ordinary cell division; because the specimen has more than one type of genetic material in its make up, any viable seeds the plant produces will not be ‘true to type’. Thus, the propagation of chimerical lilies can only be achieved through vegetative methods.
Named for the two-faced Roman god of “beginnings and transitions”, ‘Janus’is indeed a rarity. 'Janus' is also is where 'Januray' comes from. In over 30 years of evaluating literally millions of seedlings, this is only the third chimera that we here at B & D have encountered. A chance seedling raised by Len Sherwin in the course of his life long passion of hybridizing lilies, we had debated with Len the pros and cons of introducing ‘Janus’—unsure there would be any interest at all in this oddity. We have finally decided that the opportunity to share this novelty with other lily enthusiasts shouldn’t be ignored.
In ‘Janus’, as we’ve noted in the other two chimera lilies we’ve worked with, flowers on a single stem might all differ. As the two separate sets of genes are randomly expressed, you will find that the cream and rose pink color combinations vary - a single petal might display both colors (as if a line had been precisely drawn down the middle of the petal), while sometimes the entire bloom is pink, or all cream. On occasion, three adjacent petals of one flower might be rose colored—and three will be cream! The “two faces” of that ancient Roman god 'Janus'.
‘Janus’ is rock hardy in Len’s Zone 5a (–20° to –25°), and it’s appearance is eagerly anticipated every year, if only to witness the color variations. As the battle for color supremacy seesaws back and forth within the plant, it is a guarantee that no two seasons of bloom will ever be the same. We truly hope that you will find ‘Janus’ to be as entertaining as we do. June flowering in Wyoming. 2 to 3 feet. Please note that flowering size bulbs will be typically smaller than other Asiatics due to genetics. Limited supply.
Bulb Size - Our standard for bulbs of this Asiatic Hybrid Lily Bulb cultivar ranges from Premium-size» (10/12 cm) to Exhibition-size» (over 16 cm). Click here for details.
Classification: Asiatic Hybrid Lily Bulb (USDA Zones 3-10, lows to -40° F.)
Stock # 1621 - 'Janus' - Asiatic Lily Bulb
Wild Lily bulbs making up the genus Lilium belong to the family Liliaceae comprising of approximately 200 genera made up of approximately 2,000 lily species. There are in the neighborhood of 110 to 120 Lilium species depending on whose classification you reference. For the full article, click Knowledge Base