Crinum bulbispermum
Common Name: crinum 
Type: Bulb
Family: Amaryllidaceae
Native Range: Southern Africa
Zone: 7 to 10
Height: 2.00 to 3.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: May to June
Bloom Description: White flushed pink with red petal stripes
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy, Fragrant


Bulbs are easily grown in organically rich, moist, well-drained soils in full sun to light shade. This species has tolerance for soggy soils. North of Zone 6, plants are often grown in large containers placed in the ground and then brought inside in winter. South of Zone 6, plants may be grown in the ground year round. In Zone 6 (St. Louis), plants may be grown in containers or planted outdoors year round in protected locations with winter mulch. When using containers, plant bulbs in pots/containers that are at least two inches larger in diameter than the bulbs. Bulbs like to be pot-bound. Set bulb in pot with the neck exposed. Keep soils moist and fertilize regularly during the growing season. After bloom, slightly reduce watering. Bring containers inside in fall before first frost for overwintering in a cool, dry, frost-free location. Increase watering in spring as plant shows signs of new growth. It should be noted that C. bulbispermum has the best winter hardiness of the crinums. Some gardeners have been able to successfully grow this crinum year round in the ground in Zone 6 (St. Louis), however the risk of loss is present. Where winter hardiness is a concern, some gardeners plant the bulbs in late spring and lift them in fall in somewhat the same manner as for dahlias. However, this procedure is generally not considered to be good practice because crinum roots do not like to be disturbed and once disturbed plants may not bloom for another 2-3 years. Plants have been introduced to and naturalized in certain parts of North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama and Louisiana.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Crinum bulbispermum is a tender perennial bulb in the Amaryllis family. The species is native to wet marginal areas of South Africa, including the Orange River valley from which it derives its sometimes used common name of Orange River lily. In addition to river banks, it is also native to wet marshes and to swampy areas that dry out in winter. Lily-like, trumpet-shaped flowers bloom in clusters (8-13 flowered umbels) in mid-spring atop scapes (to 2-3’ tall) rising above a clump of strap-shaped blue-green leaves. Plants may rebloom in early fall. Each flower (to 4” long) is white flushed with pink with a red stripe down the center of each petal. Flowers are fragrant.

Genus name comes from the Greek word krinon meaning lily.


Mealybugs, nematodes, slugs and snails are occasional visitors. Leaf scorch.


Borders, containers. Water gardens. Good accent. Good cut flower.