Common name: Charming Centaury, Canchaluaga, California Centaury
The common name Charming Centaury still bears a part of this flower’s former scientific name, Centaurium venustum. The genus Centaurium has been split into four genii now, based on location, and Charming Centaury is now known as Zeltnera venusta. Other common names for it include Canchaluaga and California Centaury.
It is a “charming” flower to look at indeed – the bold pink (or is that magenta? I’m a guy…) glows bright in bloom and sure catches the eye. For some reason, some flowers remain almost entirely white, with just a hint of pink on the petals. There also seems to be some variation in the center of the flower which is sometimes entirely white, other times definitely yellow. The shape of the petals appears to vary as well – and the twirled anthers are a great detail that the macro lens reveals. :-)
The Zeltnera genus is named for Swiss botanists Nicole and Louis Zeltner; the epithet venusta is a form of the Latin venustus, meaning charming, handsome.