Manfreda maculosa, commonly known as the Texas Tuberose or Spice Lily, is a species of flowering plant in the agave family, Agavaceae, that is endemic to southern Texas and northeastern Mexico.
Texas Tuberose is acaulescent, meaning the stem is extremely short. The fleshy green leaves are covered with purple spots and often lay flat on the ground. In a drought, the leaves will wither and disappear, leaving little or nothing visible above ground. Sufficient precipitation yields an inflorescence 60 cm (24 in) tall in the period April-September. The new flower stalks (inflorescences) are fed on by small mammals, which can end the flowering effort for that season.
The flowers open and change colors over 3-4 days of life, from white to pink to dark red. The inferior ovaries turn from green to purple to black as they mature as seedpods.
Texas Tuberose is the primary host plant for the caterpillars of the rare Manfreda Giant-Skipper or Aloe Skipper (Stallingsia maculosus (= Stallingsia smithi)). A reduction in the M. maculosa population could threaten the existence of the moths.
1. ↑ Quinn, Mike (2008-12-05). "Manfreda Giant-Skipper Stallingsia maculosus (H. A. Freeman, 1955)". Texas Entomology. http://www.texasento.net/Stallingsia.htm. Retrieved 2007-08-26.
* Lehman, R.L., O'Brien, R., and T. White. 2005. Plants of the Texas coastal bend. Texas A&M Univ. Press. 352 pp.
Source: Wikipedia, Wikispecies: All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License