Coral Drops (Bessera elegans)

Photo by Gayla Trail  All Rights Reserved

I ordered these bulbs from Garden Import back in the early spring and put them outside after the last frost. Low and behold it grew, and the flowers opened up just this past weekend. Coincidentally, their Fall catalog arrived at the same time. I spent some time flipping through it last night, oohing and awing at the many bulbs I’d love to buy and grow.

When I threatened to make a list of everything I want from the catalog, Davin suggested I make one called, “All the Plants I Will Not Be Buying This Fall.”


Photo by Gayla Trail  All Rights Reserved

Coral Drops, (Bessera elegans) is a Mexican flowering bulb plant with very delicate flowers that dance and bob on thin stems. The bulbs are very tiny and the leaves are thin, making them a good choice for container growing. I grew my set in a pot on the roof and gave the remaining bulbs to a friend who is also growing them in a container with very gritty, well-draining soil.

I planted 7 bulbs in a pot that is 10″ wide and 8 1/2″ deep, a few more than the recommended number for a pot of that size. In hindsight I was too safe and feel I could have pushed it and put all 10 bulbs into that pot for a tighter display. Regardless, they look great and I’m really glad I allowed myself to splash out on this and a few other non-edibles this year. There are all kinds of nourishment, and this one was for my eyes, not my stomach.

Photo by Gayla Trail  All Rights Reserved

Here’s what it looks like when you flip it upside down. You can really see the strange purple pistil and green pollen.

Photo by Gayla Trail  All Rights Reserved

A flower that is just opening and some buds.

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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8 thoughts on “Coral Drops (Bessera elegans)

  1. Beautiful plant, delicate in form but bold in colour. Love it. The purple pistil is so interesting and contrasts vividly with the orange stamens.

    I’m now off to oooh and aww over the plants on the Garden Import site. I’d love to see your Wish List.

  2. I’m making a list & checking it twice…
    Now is a great time to make a wish list! You actually see what’s going on in the gardens & the possibilities of ‘what could’ be.

    Garden therapy involves nourishment for the body as well as the soul (your eyes are the windows…), so it’s great to see a gorgeous flower like this in your care!

  3. you’re photography is so beautiful. this site has been a great source of inspiration and backdrops for my work computer!

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