Étoile de Bethléem

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Ornithogalum umbellatum

Ornithogalum umbellatum
Ornithogalum umbellatum flowers, open and closed
Scientific classification edit
O. umbellatum
Binomial name
Ornithogalum umbellatum
Global distribution (native + introduced) of Ornithogalum umbellatum
    • Hyacinthus umbellatus (L.) E. H. L.Krause
    • Ornithogalum affine Boreau nom. illeg.
    • Ornithogalum angustifolium Boreau
    • Ornithogalum boraeanum Jord. & Fourr.
    • Ornithogalum campestre (Savi) Prain
    • Ornithogalum cespititium Jord. & Fourr.
    • Ornithogalum corymbosum Gaterau
    • Ornithogalum dioscoridis Bubani
    • Ornithogalum fasciculatum Timb.-Lagr.
    • Ornithogalum garganicum Ten.
    • Ornithogalum horologicum Stokes
    • Ornithogalum minus L.
    • Ornithogalum nanum Ten. nom. illeg.
    • Ornithogalum parviflorum Jord. & Fourr.
    • Ornithogalum peyrei Timb.-Lagr.
    • Ornithogalum praetextum Steven ex Kunth
    • Ornithogalum preumbellatum Candargy
    • Ornithogalum rusticum Jord. & Fourr.
    • Ornithogalum stellare Salisb. nom. illeg.
    • Ornithogalum tardans Jord. & Fourr.
    • Ornithogalum vulgare Sailer
    • Scilla campestris Savi
    • Stellaris corymbosa (Gaterau) Moench
P3+3 A3+3 G(3)
Floral formula: Flowers actinomorphic and hermaphrodite with 6 undifferentiated tepals in two whorls of three, the same number and arrangement of stamens, and a superior ovary with 3 fused carpels
From centre outwards: Trilocular ovary, 6 stamens, 6 tepals

Ornithogalum umbellatum, the garden star-of-Bethlehem, grass lily, nap-at-noon, or eleven-o'clock lady, a species of the genus Ornithogalum, is a perennial bulbous flowering plant in the asparagus family (Asparagaceae). O. umbellatum is a relatively short plant, occurring in tufts of basal linear leaves, producing conspicuous white flowers, in a stellate pattern, in mid to late spring. The flowers open late in the day (hence some of its common names), but when closed have a green stripe on the outside. It is native throughout most of southern and central Europe, and north-western Africa. O. umbellatum is often grown as a garden ornamental, but in North America and other areas it has escaped cultivation and can be found in many areas, where it may become an invasive noxious weed. Parts of the plant are considered poisonous, but are used in some regional cuisines. Essences are also sold as patent remedies. O. umbellatum has been depicted in art by artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, and folklore has suggested it originally grew from fragments of the star of Bethlehem, hence its horticultural name.

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