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Alstroemeria (Alstroemeria ligtu)

Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Alstroemeria ligtu

None known

  • Medicinal Use

    None known

  • Edible Use

    Root – cooked[105]. The roots are a source of a palatable starch[2, 46, 177]. It is very nutritious and is given to children and invalids[139].

  • Cautionary Notes

    Some people are sensitive to this plant and skin contact with the sap can cause them to get dermatitis[65].

Cultivation & Habitat

Seed – best sown in individual pots in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe although seedlings can be transplanted successfully if they are moved with care whilst small. Pre-soak stored seed for 12 hrs in warm water, warm stratify for 4 weeks at 25¡c and then reduce the temperature to 10¡c. Excising a small bit of the seed near the embryo after the seed has been warm stratified helps to speed up the germination process[164]. Plant out about 20cm deep into their permanent positions in late summer or autumn[200]. Division in April or October with care since the plant resents root disturbance[133]. Ensure each portion has a growth bud[111].
Requires a fertile, moisture retentive well-drained soil and a warm situation in sun or semi-shade[200]. Prefers a dry sheltered border and a peaty loam[1]. Established plants are drought tolerant according to one report[190], whilst another says that the soil should not be allowed to dry out in the growing season[42]. Plants succeed in maritime gardens[233]. A very ornamental plant[1], it is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, tolerating temperatures down to between -5 to -10¡c[200]. Young plants are best given a protective mulch for their first winter or two[233]. The lily-like flowers have a sweet fragrance of mignonette[245]. They are one of the longest-lasting of cut flowers for the home and so are commonly grown for this purpose[245]. The edible roots are sold in local markets in Chile[46]. The roots should be planted 15 – 20cm deep when dormant in late summer to autumn and then be well mulched to protect them from severe winter weather. Plants can be rather invasive, spreading by means of underground fleshy roots to form large patches[187]. Somewhat intolerant of root disturbance[1], the roots are fleshy and brittle[200].
S. America – Chile

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*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.