Why We Grow Our Own; Old Way Just Works Better for Propagating Crinum Lilies

More to come on our ideas for growing more crinum bulbs!

More to come on our ideas for growing more crinum bulbs!

Oh Man That Hurts!  Two years of cultivation and care and now we have to dump all of these crinum lily bulbs.  Why? Because the person I bought them from sold them as one thing, but in actuality, they are a mix of colors and habits of growth.

Since they were tiny products of a tissue culture laboratory, we had no way to know this until they flowered, long after we’d paid the bill and spent resources growing them out.

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While they were supposed to be the same, you can see difference in bulb shape. Flowers varied too in these plants started from tissue culture.

Tom & I have built our reputation on providing correctly named plants.  While I’m happy to explore and have even funding tissue culture research at Clemson University.  But there are yet wrinkles, somewhere in the process, to be ironed out.   We’ll continue to support and evaluate all sorts of new stuff, especially our brilliant friend, researcher and TC pioneer Dr. Adelberg.  And, I am hatching several other ideas for growing quality,  properly named plants!

(Mixed crinum work great in retention ponds, in ditches and anywhere you may need to slow down or absorb water.  If you need bulbs for this sort of restoration planting, email me; we have a deal for you!)




  1. Will on October 27, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Details like this make it easier to understand why Lowes is Lowes and JenksFarmer.com is unmatched for value and quality. Thanks for this little story.

  2. Cathy Meyer on November 2, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    Hello good information:
    I am a Tampa Native. Just recently company move to GA. I have, in a large pot, a crinum lily that was at the first home we ever owned and I dug it up and took it with us 25 years ago. Someone told me it was a CUBAN plant and this is what I always called it. Living in GA our staghorn and Lilly live in the garage for 4 months out of the year.. Last week a business trip took me to Orlando and there was a cluster of “my” plant so often seen at hotels. I saw the stalks were heavy with bulbs, laying on the ground. I bagged up the black ones all with a root. I took a green stalk cluster, but I am sure that nothing will happen with this one. (I will still just dry them out and see) Anyway, I laid the pods in a large flat pot with cactus soil, covering the single roots. It is in our garage. Now what? I stopped at a nursery in Orlando and showed them a picture of the hotel plants to get the correct name and was told they are slow to grow. I like to make new plants from pods and seeds. My potted lily has never bloomed in it’s pot, but remains very healthy. I am very successful at plumeria seed to plant. Seeds that came from Hawaii with my in laws 40 years ago. An entire backyard is overgrown with them, lovely!.

    Thank you for any helpful points,

    • Jenks Farmer on November 2, 2014 at 8:41 pm

      They’re easy to germinate — just leave the seed on top of the soil in a warm place and they’ll grow!

      • Cathy Meyer on November 3, 2014 at 11:31 am

        Thank you Jenks Farmer and family for the helpful advice on my crinum lily. I have enjoyed your site and so glad to have stumbled upon it.


        • Linda on November 11, 2023 at 3:17 pm

          My husband found a purple crinum lily seed that was under a plant in Jacksonville, Fla at our hotel!. i put it in a very large pot and it is around 1 1/2’ tall now. A friend let us have a large group of Crinum Lillies (5’ tall and around 5 of then). We had to pull them out with our SUV . We were going out of town so i did not have time to deal with them. I put the clump beside some pilings on our pavers. Now 5 months later they are still above ground and every single one has flowered and now producing clumps of giant seeds. I also wondered if i should dry them a bit until i have time to plant them. They are definitely salt water tolerant. Our yard was all under water during the last hurricane for at least 13 hours. The unplanted plants have not skipped a beat! I am shocked that they are thriving and not planted in the ground. We do live on the beaches in the Tampa area. I really didn’t know how deep to plant them either. Linda

          • Jenks Farmer on November 12, 2023 at 6:24 am

            I love this story. Im curious, how often and for how many years has your house flooded with salt water?

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