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Name this flower (please)

Bert45

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
(2003) Francés, (2014) Francés, (2016) Portugués , (2016) Aragonés, (2018) del Norte to Primitivo,
The photo of some flowers I saw on my camino was taken in October 2016 between Lacommande and Oloron. I had previously seen similar flowers in Spain -- fields of them giving the whole field a pink blush. I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas". Google tell me that this word means 'snacks', so I think that my Spanish was not good enough to ask the question or perhaps to understand the answer. They are like crocuses, and, perhaps, that's what they are, but I would like confirmation, please, from any gardening experts on the forum. They fascinate me because the flowers come out of the ground with no leaves. I am aware that some flowers have local names as well as official names. For instance, the rock-rose is 'jara' in Spanish but they are called 'estepas' near Ponferrada. [I was told it the opposite way round, but my dictionary has 'jara', but not 'estepa' for a flower.] So the barman could have been right for what they call them around Villalcázar de Sirga.
1-037.JPG
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
I am not a gardening expert but I remember these flowers well. We saw them in Galicia in November. I was convinced that they are Colchicum autumnale which grows in autumn in meadows in many parts of Europe and which I know from my youth and love to see. However, further investigation revealed that there is a plant called Crocus serotinus which looks the same and grows in autumn in Spain, Portugal and north west Africa.

The English Wikipedia article says that Colchicum autumnale is also known as autumn crocus and that may be so in English but definitely not in other European languages where their equivalent word of autumn crocus refers to Crocus serotinus.

I remember an earlier thread about this plant. Whatever you saw between Lacommande and Oloron in France in October and at other times in autumn in Spain and whether they were the same plants or different plants, what I remember is that there are many local names in Spain for plants that look very similar to the one in your photo, grow in autumn and have no leaves.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas"
Google merendera.

I see now that Colchicum and Crocus look alike and can be confused by the casual observer. To add to the confusion, there are autumn-flowering species of crocus. However, colchicums have 3 styles and 6 stamens, while crocuses have 1 style and 3 stamens. In addition, the corm structures are quite different—in colchicum, the corm is irregular, while in crocuses, the corm is like a flattened ball.

Well, that should make it easy to tell them apart.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Found it again! This Wikipedia article about Colchicum montanum aka Merendera Montana has a long list of local names in Spain. For the region of Castilla y Leon where Villalcázar de Sirga is located it is: alzameriendas, merendera, zampameriendas, espachapastores, merendera de monte, avergüenzamozos, merendera loca, no meriendes. The photo shows a flower without a stem but there are other photos where a stem can be seen.

As to the very similar plant Colchicum autumnale, there are over 50 local names for it in German or in locally spoken German dialects, ranging from France to Hungary.

In the region of Aquitaine where Oloron is situated, Colchicum autumnale is a protected plant, which means that it definitely grows there (Liste des espèces végétales protégées en Aquitaine). French names are safran bâtard, safran des pays, ail des prés, chenard, mort chien, tue-chien, tue-loup, vachette ou veilleuse. But Colchicum montanum also grows in this area and is protected, see here. Good site, shows you where stuff grows naturally, see Maps/Global presence.
 
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amancio

Veteran Member
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Frances, Norte, Primit, Salvador, Portug, Arag, Ingles, VdlP, Leban-Vadin, Fisterra, Invierno, LePuy
crocus, indeed! they are said to announce the shortening of summer days and weather getting colder
 

freespirit

Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances - Lourdes v SJPDP - Santiago (June/July 2010) Camino Frances - SJPDP - Santiago (July/August 2015) Camino Frances - SJPDP - Santiago (June/July/August 2017)
The photo of some flowers I saw on my camino was taken in October 2016 between Lacommande and Oloron. I had previously seen similar flowers in Spain -- fields of them giving the whole field a pink blush. I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas". Google tell me that this word means 'snacks', so I think that my Spanish was not good enough to ask the question or perhaps to understand the answer. They are like crocuses, and, perhaps, that's what they are, but I would like confirmation, please, from any gardening experts on the forum. They fascinate me because the flowers come out of the ground with no leaves. I am aware that some flowers have local names as well as official names. For instance, the rock-rose is 'jara' in Spanish but they are called 'estepas' near Ponferrada. [I was told it the opposite way round, but my dictionary has 'jara', but not 'estepa' for a flower.] So the barman could have been right for what they call them around Villalcázar de Sirga.
View attachment 106442
Hi for those of you who like to know
I am not a gardening expert but I remember these flowers well. We saw them in Galicia in November. I was convinced that they are Colchicum autumnale which grows in autumn in meadows in many parts of Europe and which I know from my youth and love to see. However, further investigation revealed that there is a plant called Crocus serotinus which looks the same and grows in autumn in Spain, Portugal and north west Africa.

The English Wikipedia article says that Colchicum autumnale is also known as autumn crocus and that may be so in English but definitely not in other European languages where their equivalent word of autumn crocus refers to Crocus serotinus.

I remember an earlier thread about this plant. Whatever you saw between Lacommande and Oloron in France in October and at other times in autumn in Spain and whether they were the same plants or different plants, what I remember is that there are many local names in Spain for plants that look very similar to the one in your photo, grow in autumn and have no leaves.
8
The photo of some flowers I saw on my camino was taken in October 2016 between Lacommande and Oloron. I had previously seen similar flowers in Spain -- fields of them giving the whole field a pink blush. I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas". Google tell me that this word means 'snacks', so I think that my Spanish was not good enough to ask the question or perhaps to understand the answer. They are like crocuses, and, perhaps, that's what they are, but I would like confirmation, please, from any gardening experts on the forum. They fascinate me because the flowers come out of the ground with no leaves. I am aware that some flowers have local names as well as official names. For instance, the rock-rose is 'jara' in Spanish but they are called 'estepas' near Ponferrada. [I was told it the opposite way round, but my dictionary has 'jara', but not 'estepa' for a flower.] So the barman could have been right for what they call them around Villalcázar de Sirga.
View attachment 106442

The photo of some flowers I saw on my camino was taken in October 2016 between Lacommande and Oloron. I had previously seen similar flowers in Spain -- fields of them giving the whole field a pink blush. I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas". Google tell me that this word means 'snacks', so I think that my Spanish was not good enough to ask the question or perhaps to understand the answer. They are like crocuses, and, perhaps, that's what they are, but I would like confirmation, please, from any gardening experts on the forum. They fascinate me because the flowers come out of the ground with no leaves. I am aware that some flowers have local names as well as official names. For instance, the rock-rose is 'jara' in Spanish but they are called 'estepas' near Ponferrada. [I was told it the opposite way round, but my dictionary has 'jara', but not 'estepa' for a flower.] So the barman could have been right for what they call them around Villalcázar de Sirga.
View attachment 106442
Hi for those.of you who like to know the names of flowers, where ever you travel there is a app you can get called Picture this worth a try.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
or those.of you who like to know the names of flowers, where ever you travel there is a app you can get called Picture this worth a try.
I agree. I have this app, it is called PictureThis, on online plant encyclopedia and plant identifier. You take a photo of a plant or tree and the app tells you what it is called. https://www.picturethisai.com
 

Bert45

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
(2003) Francés, (2014) Francés, (2016) Portugués , (2016) Aragonés, (2018) del Norte to Primitivo,
Thanks, all of the above. Is it odd that 'merendero' means snack-room, tea-room, and picknicking place, while merendera is this flower? What a difference a letter makes! Plenty of English words change their meaning radically if you change one letter -- of course, I can't think of one now. It seems I may have misheard the barman, or I had forgotten what he'd said by the time I got to write it down. I shall be counting the petals, styles and stamens of the flowers in my photos. I couldn't dig any of the corms up as I didn't have a trowel with me and it's probably illegal.
 
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Scott Sweeney

Active Member
The photo of some flowers I saw on my camino was taken in October 2016 between Lacommande and Oloron. I had previously seen similar flowers in Spain -- fields of them giving the whole field a pink blush. I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas". Google tell me that this word means 'snacks', so I think that my Spanish was not good enough to ask the question or perhaps to understand the answer. They are like crocuses, and, perhaps, that's what they are, but I would like confirmation, please, from any gardening experts on the forum. They fascinate me because the flowers come out of the ground with no leaves. I am aware that some flowers have local names as well as official names. For instance, the rock-rose is 'jara' in Spanish but they are called 'estepas' near Ponferrada. [I was told it the opposite way round, but my dictionary has 'jara', but not 'estepa' for a flower.] So the barman could have been right for what they call them around Villalcázar de Sirga.
View attachment 106442
Saffron.
 

Eleonore

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Portuguese
Ingles
The photo of some flowers I saw on my camino was taken in October 2016 between Lacommande and Oloron. I had previously seen similar flowers in Spain -- fields of them giving the whole field a pink blush. I asked what they were called in Villalcázar de Sirga, and the barman said they were called "merendinas". Google tell me that this word means 'snacks', so I think that my Spanish was not good enough to ask the question or perhaps to understand the answer. They are like crocuses, and, perhaps, that's what they are, but I would like confirmation, please, from any gardening experts on the forum. They fascinate me because the flowers come out of the ground with no leaves. I am aware that some flowers have local names as well as official names. For instance, the rock-rose is 'jara' in Spanish but they are called 'estepas' near Ponferrada. [I was told it the opposite way round, but my dictionary has 'jara', but not 'estepa' for a flower.] So the barman could have been right for what they call them around Villalcázar de Sirga.
View attachment 106442
I believe in the US we call them Naked Ladies. My daughter has them in her garden.
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
<bites tongue>
I bet I know what you wanted to say. <straight face>

Something like this:

Colchicum autumnale, commonly known as autumn crocus, meadow saffron or naked ladies, is a toxic autumn-blooming flowering plant that resembles the true crocuses, but is a member of the plant family Colchicaceae, unlike the true crocuses which belong to the family Iridaceae. The name "naked ladies" comes from the fact that the flowers emerge from the ground long before the leaves appear.​
Did I guess right?
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
I think Amaryllis belladonna is also commonly called a naked lady. Same reason, the flowers emerge from the ground before the leaves. Toxicity also seems common! Beware the naked lady.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
While I was looking for something else, I saw a comment by people from Grañon on the Camino Francés and a photo of flowers that they call quitameriendas, a sure sign that summer is coming to an end.

These lucky people who live in lands where summer is coming to an end towards the 1st of October!!! Where I live it is the end of August, and we can already see and feel that summer is coming to an end.

Quitameriendas.jpg
 

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