Crinum luteolum (was Crinum flaccidum )

Bruce Schroder via pbs
Tue, 25 Jan 2022 15:04:39 PST
In their natural habitat, summer temperatures can be as much as 50C (122F)
with winter temperatures averaging a low of about 10C (50F).  Average
annual rainfall is about 280mm or 11.1 inches and is distributed evenly
throughout most months of the year although in summer, it will all fall in
a short single burst and mostly run straight off with next to no
infiltration into the soil.  The cooler months sees more drizzle type rain
which better penetrates the soil.  The areas would NEVER see snow!

The desert areas in which they grow have just experienced last week one of
the heaviest rainfalls in years so it will be interesting to see the result
of this in a week or two.  Of course the rains bring hazards such as
flooding and damage to roads so the area may be inaccessible for some time
and the flowering may go unseen!

Because of the extreme heat, the bulbs have developed contractile roots
which actually pull the bulb deep within the heavy compacted soils.  The
base of the tennis ball size bulbs sit approximately 450mm (18 inch) below
the surface with an extraordinarily long neck protruding to just below
surface level when dormant.

Although I have grown my bulbs since 2010 (from seed), if success is
measured in achieving flowering, then I have failed!  It is understood it
can take 20 years or more from seed to flowering and although I am growing
mine in "better" conditions than in the wild and perhaps I will get
flowering sooner than that, I need to be very mindful of not pampering them
with too much moisture because, given their natural habitat, they would be
very sensitive to excess moisture.

Bruce Schroder, Melbourne, Australia
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