Sometimes called Ulster Mary (a corruption of the botanical name), or Peruvian lily from the country of origin. Pronounced Alstro-MARY-ah. The flower is named after Claus Alstroemer, a pupil of the great botanical classifier Linnaeus who went to South America and sent back seeds of species of this flower.
The flowers are like miniature lilies, with spotted or striped markings, shaded colour, or contrasting patches.
Peru, Brazil and Chile where where they grow in cool mountainous regions.
Breeders in the UK and Holland have developed a huge range of hybrid varieties, all with quite different colours and markings. You can buy them all year round, in red, pink, orange, white, cream, yellow, peach and purple!
You can buy them all year round.
Leaves wilt before flowers, so remove all foliage before putting in an arrangement. They will last about two weeks in water. Take care in transporting the flowers as the stem joints are brittle and easily broken.