Giant Crinum, Poison Bulb, Giant Crinum Lily (Crinum asiaticum)

pomme8916August 26, 2007

Hi, I have some crinum lily seeds aand was wanting to know how to sow their seeds.

the are of this plant: see link

since i do not know much about them, i thought i'd ask here.

are the seeds supposed to be green or what?

basically, how do you germinate them?

how did you germinate yours.

I cut some pods off a stock and they are now ripening.

any information apreciated



Here is a link that might be useful: lily pictures

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Crinum seeds grow very easily if they're ripe. Usually at that point the pod covering will split and the seeds will just kind of "plop" out onto the ground. Seeds are large, up to the size of a ping pong ball, and may already have a growth bud beginning to expand. At any rate, I just put the seeds in a pot of soil, covering them about as deep as their diameter. Make sure the soil stays moist and put the pot in a warm place; I like to put the whole pot inside a zip-lock bag so I don't have to keep watering as I wait for germination. Most crinums will germinate in under a month. The more warmth, food, and light the seedlings get, the faster they grow.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2007 at 4:53AM
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Thanks. would you know if the seeds are supposed to be green. I have cut off a seed stalk and but it in water and the seedpod is turning yellow. would you happen to know if this if they will still germinate or know of a source where i can buy seeds.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2007 at 7:11AM
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Could you help me please. I have seeds (?)from Crinum Americanas. I was following your advise above about planting them,. BUT I do not know which way is up. I can't tell where the root will form. The seed are such irregular in shape. There is one very small one that has sprouted a little green stem it appears to me. I'm guessing they sprout that first to get energy to form roots. But studying that one I still can't tell which is up and which is down.

Any ideas for me?
Thank you!

P/S I looked through your blog you have very unusual crinums. Very nice photography. Thanks for sharing them.

Please answer I have them laying on top of the pots waiting to be planted,

    Bookmark   November 3, 2008 at 11:01AM
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bluebonsai101(6a PA)

The Crinum I have grown from seed, including several species from South Africa and some of my own plants from India all put out a root just sitting in a container on a the point where the root is maybe a half-inch long or so I sit it on top of soil with the new root in the that point they take over and need for any more treatment than that for the limited number I have bothered with......insanely easy is the bottom line :o) Dan

    Bookmark   November 3, 2008 at 12:21PM
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Most Crinum seed will still be green when ripe; the key is that the sheath covering the seed will begin to yellow and become wrinkly. The seeds of most species, including americanum and asiaticum, are designed to float, since they tend to grow along waterways in nature and the ripe seeds float away on the current to germinate where they come ashore. They are very irregular, and it doesn't seem to matter "which end is up", as long as they don't dry out entirely; "insanely easy" is a good characterization. It's finding the space to grow them that's tough!

BTW - Crinum 'Emma Jones' has been amazing in my garden this year. One clump (about 10 years old) has produced over 40 bloom scapes since July and at this writing (November 4) has two scapes in full bloom and two ready to open. I can't recommend this one highly enough, if you can get your hands on it!

    Bookmark   November 4, 2008 at 3:38AM
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I appreciate the quick and imformative replies. It makes sense that when the seeds fall off they don't always land right side up. I just remembered one year I planted all my crocus bulbs upside down. sheesh! Took them forever to come up.
I planted about 20 seeds today. I sure hope they all live.
I have plenty of room to plant them. I am edging a very large circle drive way with them. Hope this works!
Again thanks so much.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2008 at 4:12AM
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michi81(zone 7)

Update us on how you got your seeds to grow. Did they come up in a month?

    Bookmark   January 18, 2009 at 12:02PM
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Please don't be annoyed by my ignorance. I live on the Mississippi Gulf Coast and am starting over, since Katrina. I have a new house and a new yard. I am very intrigued by Crinum Lilies but know nothing about bulbs, planting them, etc, and would appreciate any constructive advice/criticism. I love the fact that they are fragrant and perennial, and have been scanning my yard, looking for the perfect spot to plant them.

Where is the best place to purchase? I have read good things about Lushlife Nurseries? Do local nurseries carry them (I will check out this weekend.) I need to plant in a "full sun" area, and want the ones that have the longest flowering period (I think?) so what would be the best species to try? When should I plant, and when should I expect results? From what I've read, it takes a few years for them to really "blossom?" Is that correct?

Thank you, in advance, for your assistance and patience!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2009 at 10:10PM
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The gulf coast is the perfect place for crinums, and many should bloom relatively soon after planting if you buy mature bulbs from reputable sources. I've had good luck with many sellers, including ebay sources, but I would avoid the TyTy companies based on tons of bad anecdotal references on the web. Lushlife is owned by Jenks Farmer, who is an incredible horticultural guru and was responsible for integrating crinums into the SC botanical garden; I've never bought plants from him (I have all of the ones he offers already), but have corresponded with him and would highly recommend him as a source for plants and information. There's lots of info on the web, so I won't duplicate it here, but if you can find the book, "Garden Bulbs for the South" by Scott Ogden, it's an invaluable reference on the subject of crinums and a myriad of other plants that would be perfect for your landscape; I loved the original edition so much that I replaced it with the new edition that came out a couple of years back - it has even more info than the first.

Here's a link to a blog entry I wrote about my crinums last summer, in case you're interested.

Here is a link that might be useful: crinum blog entry 2008

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 3:40AM
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Bubba, what a nice way to start the morning - thank you for so much information! I enjoyed your blog very much and will refer back to it, as well as order Scott Ogden's book.

I had planned today to go look for a shrub or small tree to replace a camellia I had to move (way too much sun, the landscaper should never have put it there when they built this house.) It is a focal point, near the house's foundation against a brick wall. I'm thinking now that a crinum would be much more dramatic and colorful, plus have the protection of the house/wall from the winds and, God forbid, hurricanes (ha.)

Thanks again for your advice. I appreciate it very much. I'll post back and keep you updated on my progress.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 8:34AM
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