Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Amaryllis belladonna L. var. blanda

See Amaryllis belladonna L.  Blanda has delicate white blooms, changing to pink with age.  It usually has more flowers per stem than the type, larger, more fragrant, opening wider with a more distinct tube and tending to be held more horizontally.  [Herbert, Baker Am., PFG pl.68/1853]. 


Horticultural & Botanical History

Amarylis blanda was first botanically described by Ker Gawler in 1812 [BM t.1450/1812]. Most likely a form of Amaryllis belladonna L., but see the historical notes below.

It was reportedly gathered in the Cape of Good Hope by Sir Joseph Banks, but had earlier been collected by van Royen of Holland and sent to Miller at the Chelsea Physic Garden in 1754.  [BM t.1450/1812].  Herbert, however, was of the view that these plants ‘were the pale belladonna [i.e. pallida], and not blanda.  The leaves of blanda are much more erect, strongly ribbed and nerved, and vaginate more; its constitution is much tenderer.’  [Herbert]. 

Worsley speculated that Amaryllis blanda is a naturally occurring Brunsdonna. i.e. hybrid between Amaryllis belladonna and Brunsvigia sp. [GC p.349/1928], but as Creasey pointed out, these plants do not usually grow in proximity to one another so this seems unlikely.  [Herbertia p.214/1939].  Also, all recorded first crosses between Amaryliis belladonna and Brunsvigia sp. exhibit much more of the Brunsvigia character, particularly in the flower shape, than does blanda.  However, a naturally occurring hybrid remains a possibility. 

Hannibal has suggested that multiflora hybrids of Amaryllis belladonna, exemplified by x Amarygia parkeri, which Amaryllis blanda somewhat resembles, may be hybrids between A. belladonna and Cybistetes longifolia.  [Australian Garden Journal. p.44, winter 1994].  This is also unlikely to be true, for reasons given in the discussion of x Amarygia parkeri.  [See x Amarygia parkeri (W.Watson) H.E.Moore ‘Ameliae’]. 


History at Camden Park

Listed in the 1850 and 1857 catalogues [B.36/1850]. 



Published Jan 14, 2009 - 10:13 AM | Last updated Jun 20, 2012 - 04:47 PM

The image depicts trumpet-shaped flowers, white and pale pink.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.1450, 1812.

Amaryllis belladonna var. blanda | BM t.1450/1812 | BHL


Family Amaryllidaceae
Region of origin

South Africa

  • Amaryllis blanda Ker-Gawl. 
  • Belladonna blanda (Ker Gawl.) Sweet
  • Coburgia blanda (Ker Gawl.) Herb. ex Sims

Common Name

Belladonna lily, Naked lady

Name in the Camden Park Record

Amaryllis blanda 


Confidence level high