W&N watercolour on DalerRowney 300gsm
Arums in my garden
Unfurl your cloak of silken white
Reveal your secret wand upraised at length
And not unlike a star you shine serene
To exalt the autumn-tide with silver cups
White or common Arum Lily (English); Wit varkoor (Afrikaans). The striking arum lily “flower” is actually many tiny flowers arranged in a complex spiral pattern on the central column (spadix). The tiny flowers are arranged in male and female zones on the spadix. The top 7 cm are male flowers and the lower 1.8 cm are female. If you look through a hand-lens you may see the stringy pollen emerging from the male flowers which consist largely of anthers. The female flowers have an ovary with a short stalk above it, which is the style (where the pollen is received).
These plants are native to Southern Africa from South Africa north to Malawi.