Wildflowers of Southern Arizona
Spiderwort (Commelinaceae) family.
The flowers emerge one at a time from large, green to maroon-tinged, hairy to hairless, folded, boatlike spathes (leaf-like bracts) with an elongated, tapering tip that resembles a bird's bill. The individual flowers have 3 blue petals, fertile and sterile stamens with blue, hairless filaments, and 3 staminodes (sterile stamens) with yellow, cross-shaped antherodes (sterile anthers). The lowest flower petal is somewhat smaller than the other 2 petals. The flowers only last for a day. The flowers are followed by seed capsules that mature within the spathes. The leaf sheaths are maroon-streaked and wrap the stems. The leaf blades are green, hairless to hairy, and linear to linear-lanceolate in shape. The stems are green to maroon-tinged, succulent, erect to ascending, and unbranched or sparsely branched. The roots are tuberous.
Santa Catalina Mountains.
Location: On edge of Sunset Trail next to cliff face hosting a Spiderwort plant.
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