new to crinum lilies

wodkaApril 17, 2009

Last week I planted crinum lilies for the first time. One was a "jumbo-sized" Cecil Houdeyshel bulb, with a bloom already on it! I already have two additional blooms/scapes? on it!

My ignorance is still showing, but I'm going to ask anyway - do I leave the dying bloom alone or do I deadhead it? If deadheading, how far down do I cut? I've got the bulb book that was recommended, but have had so much company since Easter, I haven't had time to get into it. Can't wait.

Thank you for any help you can give me!

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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

Crinums will put up a big thick bloom stalk similar to Hippeastrums (amaryllis). The blooms will form at the top of the stalk and hang or dangle by a short stem. As the blooms die, I break off the short stem, leaving the stalk. There are usually several blooms per stalk, so I break off the dying blooms until all the buds have bloomed. Then, I cut the stalk back at ground level. Depending on the type crinum you have, one plant may well put up several stalks during the growing season. I don't have Cecil Houdeyshel, but I can say that yours is blooming a good three months before my first ones ever bloom. This may be because it was forced in a greenhouse for sales effect. No harm if it's so, just don't expect blooms this early next year.
Good luck with your crinums. You'll love them and will likely find them to be addictive!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 10:55PM
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I agree with Donna, and Cecil H. is a clone of C. x powellii, a sterile hybrid, so it won't set seeds, even if you leave the old scapes on the plants. I think cutting them off after bloom is a good plan for now to reduce the top-heaviness of the plant as the roots get a grip, though.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 4:12AM
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Donna and Bubba, sorry to be so late in getting back to you, but thanks for the info. A little update - my Cecil H. and Imperial Guard both are putting out more scapes/blooms. The leaves are rather lanky and awkard looking, but I'm thinking that's because they are still so new to the landscape?

Another surprise. When we first moved into our house, a lawn service left their business card with two small bulbs to plant. I didn't hire him, but did plant the bulbs and last week I noticed I had the most beautiful deep purple gladiolus!

I'm beginning to see why bulbs are so addictive! Now if only I had a bigger yard - ha.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2009 at 6:12PM
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