Alstroemeria aurea
Common Name: lily of the Incas 
Type: Bulb
Family: Alstroemeriaceae
Native Range: Argentina, Chile
Zone: 7 to 10
Height: 1.00 to 3.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to July
Bloom Description: Yellow, orange
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium
Flower: Showy

Culture

Best grown in organically rich, medium moisture, well-drained soils in sunny locations. Appreciates some afternoon shade or sun-dappled shade in hot summer climates. Finger-like roots should be spread over a mound of soil in somewhat the same manner as used for planting bare root roses. Winter hardy to USDA Zone 7 (with winter protection), but will not survive most St. Louis winters (Zone 5b to 6a). In St. Louis, plants are best grown in containers which must be brought indoors in winter with very minimal watering. If planted in the ground, alstroemeria clumps may be dug and overwintered indoors a moist medium in a cool location, however it should be noted that the roots are very brittle and difficult to dig. Where they can be planted permanently in the ground, plants will naturalize by creeping roots to form colonies in optimum growing conditions.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Alstroemeria aurea, commonly called Peruvian lily, is a tuberous perennial native to South America. Terminal clusters of small, lily-like flowers top slender, upright stems growing in bushy clumps to 2-3' tall. Flowers in yellow or orange, often with spotting and streaking. Blooms in summer. Narrow, twisted, lance-shaped leaves to 4" long. Synonymous with A. aurantiaca. Hybrid strains of alstroemeria have become extremely popular commercial cut flowers and are available in a wide range colors, including orange, yellow, red, pink, purple, lavender, salmon and white.

Genus name honors Swedish botanist Klaus von Alstroemer (1736-1794) who was a student and friend of Carolus Linnaeus.

Specific epithet means golden.

Problems

May require staking when grown in containers.

Garden Uses

Large container plant. Cut flower.