It has been said that crinums (Crinum bulbispermum) won’t die. That’s pretty accurate. Crinums are affectionately called ‘hot country lilies’ because they thrive in hot tropical climates and can often be seen growing in over-grown meadow conditions where an old homestead once stood. A fragrant testament to homesteader who planted them a 100 or so years ago. Crinums are sun-loving, summer-blooming perennials that are extremely adaptable to most any growing condition and you’ll have to work overtime to kill these hardy, southern lilies.
Plant crinums anywhere you want – dry or wet soil, clay, humus or in rocky terrain, full sun or partial shade The most important thing to remember when planting these tough-as-nails lilies is to plant them in a location where you’ll never want to move them.
Plant crinum bulbs up to their necks in the fall or spring, with fall being the best time of year of planting. Bulbs are large, typically weighing in at 1-2 pounds and will increase in size over the years. It’s not unusual for old crinum bulbs that have been planted for decades to enlarge to the size of a basketball and weight 20+ pounds.
Crinums will reach a mature height of between 20 and 60 inches, depending on variety planted. All varieties produce large blooms atop a long stem with long, grass-like foliage at the base of the plant.
Crinums bloom repeatedly from spring till the first killing frost of fall. Large, trumpet-shaped flower come in a wide range of single colors or bi-color. Flowers are fragrant and make long-lasting cut flowers. Deadhead old blooms for a constant supply of fresh blooms.
Absolutely no care required aside from deadheading, but even that is not a necessity for the lilies to grow and thrive. These tough lilies are the ones often seen in abandoned graveyards, home sites and other areas where no caretakers are around. The only thing that can kill these lovely lilies is cold. They like swamps, drought, neglect and heat, but can’t stand the cold, that’s why you won’t find them growing in a natural habitat above hardiness zone 7.