Dwarf/Mini Crinum

Alani Davis alanidae@gmail.com
Sun, 27 Nov 2011 19:08:01 PST
Dear Jim and all-

This plant is one that I have not been able to place with a name with any
certainty but I can be sure it is not Crinum oliganthum. It has been around
for a number of years in the trade as Crinum sp. Thailand and has been
exported by a number of ginger and tropical plant growers though it still
isn't that common in cultivation. It is apparently wild collected there and
some of the Thai growers have contacted me trying to answer the same
question - if it was Crinum oliganthum as well. The characteristics to
separate them that are easiest to see are the much higher bud counts and
larger scapes and the typical offset formation at the basal plate on the
Thailand Crinum while true Crinum oliganthum typically has much slighter
scapes with rarely up to 4 buds but often 1 or 2 and offsets are produced
on stolons. (There is at least on Crinum oliganthum hybrid out there in the
trade that look very similar to C. oliganthum in shape and size but has bud
counts up to 6-8 called Bayou Travaler but still the Thai plants have more
buds). The Thailand plant I have grown has bulbs with short necks that get
up to large hen egg sized or slightly bigger. I have one other Thailand
origin plant that I got labeled Crinum gracilis. It looks very similar to
the other Thailand plant but has leaves that narrow to more acuminate tips
and has a glaucous gray cast to the foliage but the size, growth habits,
and flowers are very similar this Crinum sp. Thailand.
There are a number of species that are reasonably small which helps make
them easier potted plants. Trick still is a pot still large enough for the
roots and bulb still and as you know the trick with smaller pots is they
dry out faster. Also as the bulbs mature and offset, is there space for
those. As a result even though some crinums can grow in a 6 pot for a time,
I would recommend even growing Crinum oliganthum in at 8-10 inch pot or
larger for best performance long term and most of these below would be
happier in a 12-16 pot or larger. Most of these small or smaller species of
Crinum are harder to find but available in cultivation.
Crinum purpurascens
Crinum hanitrae
Crinum lavrani
Crinum razafindratsiraea
Crinum bracteatum
Crinum caribaeum
With hybrids I would consider Ms. Nancy, Zan Gypsy and the C. oliganthum
hybrid Menehume, which are all compact plants. There some others that at
smaller plants but not widely available yet.

All the best
Alani Davis
Tallahassee, Florida

More information about the pbs mailing list