Alstroemeria Facts

Overview

Alstroemeria, or the Peruvian Lily, is a long-lasting flower with a rich history and a wide range of color choices. Its leaves are a mass of twists that lend character to the beauty of the flower.

Discovery

The alstroemeria was named after Baron Claus von Alstromer, its discoverer. Von Alstromer was on a trip to Spain collecting seeds in 1753 when he came across this interesting bloom. Carl Linnaeus named the flower after the baron.

Description

The alstroemeria is a trumpet-shaped flower with blooms that appear in a cluster. These clusters are at the end of a stalk that comes off a single stem. Each flower can last a week, and the stem can bloom for two weeks.

Color Choices

Colors for the Peruvian lily range from purple and lavender to the pink and reds. Other colors include orange, yellow, apricot and white. Colors can be streaked with another color, or even freckled.

Symbolism

The Peruvian lily is a flower that means friendship and devotion when given. Flower meanings date back to the Victorian era.

When to Buy

Alstroemeria are best bought when one to two flowers have opened. Other buds should be showing color. Make sure the leaves and the stems are both a deep green color.

Warnings

Peruvian lilies can cause a bit of allergic dermatitis in some people. Washing with a soap and water can keep this risk low. Florists should wear gloves to lessen the continued contact with the flower.

References

  • Teleflora: Meaning & Symbolism of Alstroemeria
  • Floral Design Institute: Alstroemeria, Peruvian Lily
Keywords: Peruvian lily, alstroemeria colors, astroemeria facts

About this Author

T.M. Samuels has been a freelance writer since 1993. She has published works in "Arthritis Today," "Alabama Living" and "Mature Years," and is the author of a gardening book. Samuels studied pre-medicine at Berry College.