Crinum nigra/Crinum asiaticum 'Cuprifolium'

Jim Lykos
Sat, 15 Oct 2005 23:59:42 PDT
Dear Nan,

I had hoped that someone with better knowledge of the hybrids made using C. procerum splendens (also has wine/red foliage) may have been able to answer your question - about the difference between C nigra and C. asiaticum 'Cuprefolium.
I have seen John Ingram's photo of the hybrid called  C. Nigra from google images. There is no picture of the overall plant or its foliage so some judgments are inferred.
The flowers of C. nigra most resemble those of  C. procerum splendens (probably the seed parent) - as the flowers are similar in shape and relative tepal width and length to those of procerum. The other parent could be the pink/red form of bulbispermum or a cross with C. augustum with which it appears to share more flower attributes.

There are many unnamed  Stenaster type Crinum hybrids that are called  C. asiaticum cuprefolium because they share the bronze/red-wine foliage and spidery flowers.  Real C. asiaticum should have  wide and  softer leaves with reticular netting and flowers with very thin tepals. and a flower  diameter of about 7 to 8 inches.  Some of these cultivars also have a similar colour (pink/wine on both sides of the flower) to that of C. nigra.  C. procerum splendens however  imparts heavier  shaped lanceloate leaves with smaller flowers on a shorter plant (unless grown in the tropics). procerum also holds its flowers higher above the foliage than any asiaticum variety whose inflorescences are short and typically within the foliage. 

The flower count is usually higher in procerum 35-100 against the typical 20-30 for asiaticum and procerum displays its flowers much more fully in a radial pattern.
Asiaticum is considerably prolific at forming a mass of offsets.  I have found procerum splendens to be a hardier Crinum in subtropical to warm temperate regions than asiaticum var cuprefolium.  I should mention also that Les Hanibal considered  C. asiaticum 'Cuprefolium inself to be a hybrid - so it becomes a question of which hybrid under the label  of Crinum asiaticum cuprefolium did you want to  compare  with C. nigra?  

Jim Lykos
Blue Mountains

More information about the pbs mailing list