This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
That there are found in California many gems of the first water in the floral line, is no new information to the thousands of readers of the Gardener's Monthly, therefore I will proceed, with-out'comment on this point, to describe one of the very finest of them, and whose name heads these lines.
Trietelia laxa belongs to the natural order of Liliacese, the famous lily family. In shape it resembles the Agapanthus or Lilium longiflorum, being trumpet shaped; the flowers are from two to four inches in length, and, at the mouth, from one to two inches in diameter. They are borne in clusters at the end of the stem, there are from ten to fifty flowers in each stem, according to size of bulb. I have often picked ones with twenty to thirty flowers, all in bloom at once, and with as many buds. The bulb is rather small to bear such large flowers, but every one knows that nearly all our finest flowers come from very fine seed. The bulb is found from five to six inches below the surface.
The leaves are few in number, generally two; are very narrow, about one-half inch wide, and are from one to one and a half feet long; they are of a dark green color and of a drooping habit, often lying flat on the ground.
The stem is long, small in circumference, generally about one-sixteenth inch only in diameter; very rigid and brittle, being easily broken over, but hard to separate; is generally as straight as a line, and is without any leaves in its whole length; it grows from sixteen inches to two feet in height.
The flowers are of various shades of blue, varying from pure Victoria blue to deep purplish blue. They are slightly fragrant and altogether magnificent.