African Lily aka Lily of the Nile

Showy blue flower clusters topping the tall stems of African lily have captured gardeners’ hearts for years. However do you know that you could develop this dazzling magnificence indoors? African lilies develop splendidly in containers.

african lily, african lily flowers, agapanthus africanusAgapanthus will get its identify from the Greek phrases agape which means love and anthos which means flower.

Get to Know Agapanthus africanus

Identified botanically as Agapanthus africanus, African lily is a clump-forming, perennial plant with lengthy, lance-shaped leaves. One uncommon selection is ‘Variegatus’, sporting striped leaves.

On the high of the tall flower stems are rounded umbels of showy, 6-petaled flowers. Every bloom is about 1-1/2″ (4 cm) lengthy. Although most African Lilies are blue, lavender or purple, ‘Albus’ has flower heads of pure white.

Give your plant loads of gentle. Some full solar is required to make this magnificence bloom. And when it does — a number of flower stems will burst with clouds of blue-hued blossoms all summer time.

This backyard favourite makes a great potted plant for the sunroom or any room that will get full daylight. Flip the pot every week to offer every aspect even gentle publicity.

Caring for African Lilies 12 months-Spherical

Pot ‘em up. Every plant sends up a number of leafless flower stems, surrounded by a fountain of lengthy, sword-shaped leaves and wishes room to develop. Plant rhizomes 1-inch (2.5 cm) deep. It is best to plant one per pot as a result of vegetation ultimately unfold out no less than 1 ft (30 cm) extensive.

Repot in spring solely when obligatory. This flowering plant blooms finest when pot-bound, so maintain the fleshy rhizome roots crowded within the container. Use a pot with drainage holes to forestall soggy soil.

Deadhead spent flower stems. After African Lily has completed blooming for the season, lower the flower stems close to the bottom of the plant. Keep in mind to at all times use sharp, clear pruners in your vegetation.

Questioning whether or not to chop African Lily again? Agapanthus africanus is an evergreen kind that does not want pruning. It may be left alone, until you need to lower off the occasional brown leaf to tidy it up. 

Overwinter A. africanus in a sunny window. It is an evergreen and desires daylight all yr lengthy. African Lily will tolerate cool temperatures, however do not expose your plant to 50°F/10°C or decrease. Scale back watering throughout the winter months, however do not enable the soil to dry out. Cease fertilizing after flowering is over. In early spring, resume regular care.

For those who’ve by no means grown African lilies, give them a attempt. Rising these tender perennials indoors is simple and, with excellent care, you will take pleasure in their attractive flowers yr after yr.

african lily, agapanthus africanus albaPure white flowers make Agapanthus africanus ‘Albus’ well-worth searching for. Photograph: Matthias Böckel

African Lily Shopping for Suggestions

You may discover Agapanthus africanus on the market in spring and summer time in backyard facilities and practically year-round at some on-line nurseries.

Although most are blue, one cultivar ‘Albus’ is pure white. A dwarf selection exists — ‘Peter Pan’ solely reaches about 10 inches (25 cm) tall.

african lily, agapanthus africanus

African Lily Care Suggestions

Origin: South Africa

Peak: 2-3 ft (60-90 cm)

Gentle: African lilies thrive in full daylight. If you do not get many blooms, transfer your plant to a sunnier location. Shifting African lily outdoor for the summer time will give it the daylight it wants.

Water: Water generously all through the rising season, preserving the soil evenly moist. Water sparingly after flowering is completed. It is a good suggestion to make use of a pot with drainage holes as a result of African Lily will not tolerate soggy soil. Yellow leaves are normally an indication of overwatering.

Humidity: Attempt to keep 40-50% relative humidity. Use a cool-mist room humidifier for finest outcomes.

Temperature: Common room temperatures 65-80°F/18-27°C. For those who scoot your container to the patio or porch for the summer time, don’t fret — it may possibly take the warmth. However carry it again indoors when the temperature drops…these tender perennials will solely tolerate temps as little as 50°F/10°C. 

Soil: Good-quality, all-purpose potting combine 

Fertilizer: Feed month-to-month in spring and summer time with a high-phosphorous water-soluble fertilizer.

Propagation: Divide vegetation in spring each 4 years or after they get too crowded. Sow African lily seeds in spring. Crops grown from seed might take 2 to three years to flower.

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