Photos of Lycoris squamigera, Naked Lady, Surprise Lily, Resurrection Lily, Magic Lily, Lu cong.

Lycoris squamigera Naked Lady, Surprise Lily, Resurrection Lily, Magic Lily, Lu cong, Amaryllis hallii. The genus Lycoris (to which our naked ladies belong) is native to eastern Asia. Living plants were introduced from Japan to America by Dr. George Rogers Hall (1820-1899) of Bristol, Rhode Island upon returning from Yokohama, in 1862. New England nurserymen widely distributed the bulbs in the late 1800s. Little used historically due to toxicity, it contains the active alkaloid galanthamine, initially used to treat nerve pain and symptoms of polio. Synthetic galanthamine in minute doses is used as a long-acting, selective, reversible and competitive acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitor for the systematic treatment of mild to moderate cognitive impairment of early-stage Alzheimer’s disease.

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