Crinum in MO - replies almost OT

Dell Sherk
Sat, 05 Jun 2010 14:15:59 PDT
I have two different crinums blooming right now (they are not planted out
but are in large pots outside for the summer. One is definitely?
Bulbispermum. The other might be variabile. I'll try to get photos before
the 90 degree days get them. The one that I think might be variabile has
stripes much like the bulbispermum but especially in bud the stripes are
almost greenish brown. They both have the "foetid" smell that I have noticed
with other bulbispermums. I'll get pics tomorrow.


-----Original Message-----
From: []
On Behalf Of J.E. Shields
Sent: Saturday, June 05, 2010 10:43 AM
To: Pacific Bulb Society
Subject: Re: [pbs] Crinum in MO - replies

Hi Jim W. et al.,

My bulbispermum growing next to the greenhouse wall have had volunteers 
seedlings come up and bloom right up against the wall.  They are definitely 
getting heat through the greenhouse wall (concrete block) in winter.

Tony Avent is making the selection from a batch of seedlings or seeds of 
[variabile x bulbispermum] that I sent him some years back.  We'll see what 
he selects when they get into his catalog.  He sent me a couple pictures 
that I really liked!

Variabile opens pale pink but darkens quickly to have broad red band on the 
tepals.  The umbel in full bloom has both pale pink and deep red 
coloration, for a really nice bicolor effect from a distance.  Variabile 
blooms in August-October, long after bulbispermum has usually finished 
flowering.  If I can get organized in September, I'll pollinate my Crinum 
variabile plants and send some seed to the PBS BX.  (That is still a 
sizeable "if.")  I think that variabile is actually hardier to cold than 
bulbispermum or x-powellii.

Pictures of Crinum variabile at:  but the flower 
pictured is not the reddest of my plants.  C. variabile is a lower-growing 
plant than bulbispermum, so I don't expect the [variabile x bulbispermum] 
plants to get as big as bulbispermum can. To cross variabile with 
bulbispermum, you'll have to store the pollen of one of the parents till 
the other one blooms.  See:

Jim Shields

At 09:17 AM 6/5/2010 -0500, you wrote:
>Dear All,
>         David and Jim S make two good points.
>         Planting depth -  My comments about hardy Crinum refer JUST
>to these two major types - x powellii and bulbispermum. The genus is
>large and has an array of cultivation needs.  I have seen plenty of
>tropical Crinums grow with their bulbs fully exposed on the ground,
>but these do not grow in MO or other cold climates.
>         Jim S. emphasized my point that young (small) bulbispermum
>seedlings do not do survive winter without protection. Give them two
>winters care and then plant out. I start mine in 4-6 inch community
>pots  and gradually advance to single plants in deep pots about 5 in
>across and up to one foot deep. These are wintered in a frost free
>         In the garden C. bulbispermum produces copious seed, but I
>cannot recall ever seeing a self sown seedling. The winter simply
>kills them off.
>         Now a Q for Jim S. Since I've never tried any of these
>bulbispermum x varaible  or straight variable, can you name a few you
>like best?  I could be tempted ( pictures?) and there's always more
>room to squeeze in a 6 foot plant !! Yikes, what am I thinking?
>         But to emphasize - plant deep, give them summer heat and sun,
>protect young plants.
>                 Enjoy           Jim W.
>ps I just look at the PBS wiki and there's no picture of C. variable
>in flower and no note about hardiness.
>         We need to add some tempting pix!!
>         and the Crinum hybrid page has no mention of variable hybrids
>to tempt either.
>   I urge readers to check them all out.  There's nice pix of xpowellii
>         and typical x powellii
>         and many bulbispermum
>Dr. James W. Waddick
>8871 NW Brostrom Rd.
>Kansas City Missouri 64152-2711
>Ph.    816-746-1949
>Zone 5 Record low -23F
>         Summer 100F +
>pbs mailing list

Jim Shields             USDA Zone 5             Shields Gardens, Ltd.
P.O. Box 92              WWW:
Westfield, Indiana 46074, USA
Tel. ++1-317-867-3344     or      toll-free 1-866-449-3344 in USA

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