Crinum Species One

Crinum species A-B are found on this wiki page.


Crinum Species C-J - Crinum Species L-N - Crinum Species O-Z - Crinum Species Index - Crinum Hybrids Index


Crinum acaule produces a large bulb from which emerge strappy, deeply channeled leaves with ciliate margins. Most of its emergent leaves also have truncate tips. Unusual for Crinum species., it's acaulescent which in this case means that the peduncle (flowering stem) stays within the bulb giving them an odd and beautiful appearance when in bloom. The flowers are extremely fragrant, especially upon opening at dusk. Best during the first 18 hours or so, and each flower fades completely within 36 hours of opening. The fragrance can be compared to that of Brugmansia species. They bloom at the beginning of the growing season, usually in October in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa where they are endemic. Growth continues on throughout the summer rains and then goes dormant for the dry cooler winter. Crinum acaule does not form pseudostems and its leaves lay relatively flat along the surface of the soil or arch over the edge of the container in which they are grown.

Most of their remaining habitat is severely degraded, overgrazed, or planted over with exotic timber. Healthy populations are now largely restricted to roadsides and fire-breaks. Charles Craib and Andrew Blackmore have found that well-timed maintenance practices of these fire-breaks employed by the South African Forestry Company Ltd. have actually improved population sizes within these fire-breaks. The mowing of the soil in autumn and winter along with infrequent rotovation allows this rare and beautiful lily to reproduce (sexually), while plants within exotic timber plantations do not increase. Craib & Blackmore 1997.

I have grown this species for a few years with excellent results on O'ahu, Hawai'i, planted in deep terracotta pots in pure horticultural pumice for good drainage and gas exchange. During active growth the plants thrived with daily hand watering in arid Kaimukī (500 mm precipitation pa) and later performed just as well in humid mesic Upper Mānoa Valley with its copious rain (3550 mm precipitation pa). I provide my plants with strong sun when in growth followed by a completely dry winter rest. It is closely related to Crinum minimum. Photos by Nhu Nguyen and Jacob Uluwehi Knecht.

Crinum acaule bud, Nhu NguyenIllustration of bulb tip, flower bracts, pedicel and truncate leaf tips, Jacob Uluwehi KnechtNight time photo (of flower that emerged under low light conditions), Nhu NguyenAnthesis at dusk (of flower formed in full sun conditions), Jacob Uluwehi KnechtAbaxial side of tepals, showing green-tips of sepals, Jacob Uluwehi KnechtCrinum acaule, Nhu Nguyen

Crinum album (syn. C. yemense) is a species native to Yemen and portions of the Middle East and northeastern Africa. Though these areas are associated with arid climates, this plant seems to be adapted to climates which are seasonally wet at least and I expect that this is not a desert species. This particular plant is a descendant of material distributed by L.S.Hannibal as Crinum yemense. L.S. Hannibal also apparently distributed other similar plant material as Crinum abyssinicum. Though I am growing material from both groups of stock, I cannot comment on their similarity or differences as yet. Care also must be taken to not confuse these with plants in the trade distributed by L.S. Hannibal as abyssinicum hybrid or pink abyssinicum hybrid, which seem to be hybrids involving Crinum moorei. I got this plant as Crinum yemense which is now considered Crinum album. This plant seems to match the descriptions of this species and it is inter as well as intraspecifically fertile producing large seeds nearly as large as as a tennis ball but as small as .75" in diameter as well. Photos by Alani Davis.

Crinum album closeup, Alani DavisCrinum album profile, Alani DavisCrinum album umbel, Alani Davisbad picture but yard stick for scale with Crinum album, Alani DavisCrinum album blooming plant, Alani DavisCrinum album pod, Alani Davis

This plant will occasionally produce a double flower as the the first or rather first two flowers of a scape. Sometimes these will be fully unified and at other times it will be like conjoined twins as is shown in these photos. I have never been able to get seed from these flowers whether with one or two pistils present. Photos by Alani Davis.

Crinum album double flower, Alani DavisCrinum album double flower, Alani DavisCrinum album double flower, Alani DavisCrinum album double flower, Alani DavisCrinum album double flower, Alani DavisCrinum album double flower, Alani Davis

Crinum americanum is native to wetlands in the southeastern United States. It can spread by large rhizomes, so give it space or keep it in a container. Grown and photographed in the gardens of Jim McKenney & Alani Davis.

Crinum americanum, Jim McKenneyCrinum americanum, Alani DavisCrinum americanum, Alani DavisCrinum americanum from beneath, Alani Davis

Crinum americanum in natural population in Bay County, Florida. Photos by Alani Davis.

Crinum americanum native population, Alani DavisCrinum americanum native population, Alani Davis

Crinum amoenum is native to India, where it grows along rivers. The flowers look much like C. americanum and allies, but it does not spread by rhizomes. The flowers tend to open all at once, so an individual scape is glorious but short lived. Photos by Nestor White and Alani Davis.

Crinum amoenum, Nestor WhiteCrinum amoenum, Alani DavisCrinum amoenum, Alani DavisCrinum amoenum, Alani Davis

Another form or possibly another species that is being distributed as Crinum amoenum though the tepals are differently poised the plants of the two forms are very similar, and for now I am calling it droopy Crinum amoenum. Photos by Alani Davis.

Crinum amoenum, Alani DavisCrinum amoenum, Alani Davis

Crinum asiaticum is a large, variable species occurring from western India throughout southeastern Asia to southern Japan, south through the Indo-Pacific Islands to northern Australia. There are a number of forms/species associated within this complex and addition this species has become widespread as a landscaping plant in the tropics and subtropics. This plant is flowering for the first time from a seed grown plant and is four years old. Photos by Alani Davis.

Crinum asiaticum, Alani DavisCrinum asiaticum, Alani Davis

Crinum bulbispermum is native to South Africa. It has distinctive long, tapered glaucous foliage and blooms early in the season, but often repeats later. The flowers are typically white with reddish keels, but there is much variation in the coverage and intensity of anthocyanins pigmentation. Variations from white forms, free of anthocyanins & with green keels, to nearly red heavily pigmented forms exist. It is also common for there to be forms which open quite pale & get progressively more pigmented over a period of days with the darkening rose-red pigment spreading typically from the keels outward across the tepal and varying in a range of expression from individual to individual with some getting quite dark rose red all over to others which only darken near the keels. This characteristic also seems to be affected by the temperature with flowers on the same plant deepening in tone & pigmentation more rapidly & intensely with blooms occurring during hot temperatures compared to those that occur during cool parts of the season. This characteristic is expressed in several hybrids as well. This Crinum species is among the most tolerant of cold winter temperatures and may be the most cold tolerant Crinum species. There are naturalized colonies and scattered populations of this species across the southeastern United States and though it may be locally common in some areas, its occurrences are variable in many parts of the region. Within these populations, sometimes unique forms can be found though usually they are less than distinct. Photos by Alani Davis.

Photos 1-2 of a "typical" form growing in a cemetery and 3-4 of a full flowered white selection.

Crinum bulbispermum, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum, Alani Davis

Photographs by David Pilling of seed from BX 341. Typical for this genus, seed is fleshy, ephemeral and germinates in spite of the conditions it is stored in.

Crinum bulbispermum seed 19th August 2013, David PillingCrinum bulbispermum seed 19th August 2013, David Pilling

'Chessboard' is a Nestor White named cultivar. It produces fertile seed. Flowers open white and turn to pink as they age. Photographs by Randy Rick.

Crinum bulbispermum 'Chessboard', Randy RickCrinum bulbispermum 'Chessboard', Randy RickCrinum bulbispermum 'Chessboard', Randy Rick

'Jumbo' seed strain began as selections of intraspecific hybrids of C. bulbispermum done by L. S. Hannibal to get larger fuller flowers, better coloration, and sturdier scapes that remain upright until flowers finish. Generally these characteristics are improved in this strain but vary with some selections being quite outstanding. Many others have continued to cross & selections from this strain with a great results. Also classic hybrid crosses involving Crinum bulbispermum repeated with this form have produce improved & larger hybrids. These pictures are of a form that opens pale colored & darkens with age.

Crinum bulbispermum Jumbo, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum Jumbo, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum Jumbo, Alani Davis

'Jumbo' seed strain a red selection

Crinum bulbispermum Jumbo red seedling, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum Jumbo red seedling, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum Jumbo red seedling, Alani Davis

'Sacramento' seed strain is a selection with a dark red stripe outside. Inside the flowers are pure white the first day, but they turn pink the second day. Photos by Angelo Porcelli

Crinum bulbispermum Sacramento, Angelo PorcelliCrinum bulbispermum Sacramento, Angelo Porcelli

'Wide Open White' is a found selection of C. bulbispermum with white flowers that open nearly flat initially though they partially close as they age. The scapes are especially tall and prone to falling over once the buds open and are best enjoyed if staked. Otherwise this form is typical to the species and quite fertile.

Crinum bulbispermum 'Wide Open White' closeup, Jay YourchCrinum bulbispermum 'Wide Open White' closeup, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum 'Wide Open White' umbel, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum 'Wide Open White', Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum 'Wide Open White', Jay Yourch

'Wide Open Green' ?? is another selection from the population that produced the 'Wide Open White' selection. It is also a white form without pigment but rather than the narrow pigmented band on the keel that 'Wide Open White' has this selection has a wide diffuse one which without the pigments is green to yellowish. Flowers are flared as well though not as sharply as with 'Wide Open White'. Fittingly it bloomed for the first time in my garden on St. Patrick's Day!

Crinum bulbispermum with green flowers, Alani DavisCrinum bulbispermum with green flowers, Alani Davis

Crinum buphanoides This is a young, seed-grown plant flowering for the first time. Information on this species can be found in L.S. Hannibal's "A Systematic Revision of the Genus Crinum". Photo by Rogan Roth.

Crinum buphanoides, Rogan Roth

Crinum Species C-J - Crinum Species L-N - Crinum Species O-Z - Crinum Species Index - Crinum Hybrids Index


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Page last modified on March 27, 2014, at 06:27 PM