Pineapple Lily


Pineapple Lily

Today we want to tell you about the Pineapple Lily also known as Eucomis bicolor , a bulbous deciduous plant native to southern Africa. It is a plant that usually lives in areas of high rainfall which requires water.

It is known as pineapple lily due to a plume that crops out on top of the flowers.

Its period of flowering occurs in the months of July and August and are usually star-shaped flowers and pale green.

He likes the semi-shade and especially the water . It does not resist frost, though, so you have to be careful when watering in winter.

The good thing is that its flowers give seeds so you can have it without problem multiplying by other pots or parts of the garden.

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The pineapple lily or Eucomis is a group of bulbous plants native to South Africa, belonging to the family of liliaceae. The bulbs of the pineapple lily or Eucomis are large and fleshy and generate rosettes of long leaves in the form of floral ribbons 75 cm long that support flowers in the shape of a star.

It is native to the province of the Cape and has been known in Britain for more than 100 years. You can also find the Eucomis comosa, known as Eucomis punctata, another popular species widely spread as a pineapple flower. He got this name from the plume of buds that appear on the top of the flower. This species can reach a height of 60 cm and display leaves with wavy edges in purple. On the underside of the leaves shows brown spots. Its fragrant flowers are green and brown and emerge in the middle of summer.

Plant the bulbs of the Eucomis in spring using an elaborate blend of two parts of black soil, one peat, leaf mulch and sand. Use pots of 13 cm in diameter and place the bulbs in such a way that they are covered by 15 centimeters of compost. Put one bulb per pot.

Remember that good drainage is essential for the pineapple lily, so a good layer of pots is needed at the base of the container so that the plant does not become saturated with water. Place the container in a sunny place and protected from cold winds. Water the compost and keep it moist for the rest of the growing season.

The plants established in containers will have to change pot each year at the beginning of spring, increasing the size of the container until it is set in 45 cm wide tubs. At this stage, instead of replacing the pot bulbs, remove a layer of 5 cm of compost and replace it with a new mixture of crumbly black earth and manure. Apply a liquid fertilizer every two or three weeks during the growth stage until the flowers are formed.

During the autumn and winter season, the bulbs will need protection so you should cover the compost and peat pots. Keep the compost slightly moist. If it gets wet, cover the pots with a plastic bag by removing it in late winter. A combination of intense cold and compost kills the bulbs of the Eucomis . However, you should not let the compost dry completely either. The best place for the plant during the winter is in a cold greenhouse.

If you want to propagate the Eucomis extract the stems of the original bulbs in spring and plant them in pots of 13 cm wide by 15 deep; It will take several years to reach the size suitable for flowering.

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Bulbous plants are large bulbs (up to 10 cm in diameter) that reach 60 cm in height when they bloom. The leaves emerge in rosette, are fleshy, wavy and soft texture. The interesting inflorescence appears in the center of the rosette and is a cylindrical cluster with abundant star-shaped flowers of white or yellowish-green color that become more green after pollination. They flower from late summer to early autumn.

They are usually used in rockeries, to cover slopes, next to a wall, on borders and margins and even in large pots.

The pineapple lily can live in an exhibition of full sun or semi-shade. Although they resist some sporadic frost, it is better not to expose them to temperatures below 5 ºC.

Although these plants can thrive in poor soils, they will look better if they contain organic matter and, very importantly, drain well. The bulbs are planted in the spring just below ground level.

During the spring and summer they will need frequent watering so that the earth maintains some moisture but never flooded. In winter the risks will be greatly reduced.

It is advisable to use a compost-based fertilizer well decomposed at the beginning of spring.

They do not need pruning .

They do not usually have problems of pests and diseases if they do not suffer from excessive drought or too much irrigation.

The fastest way to multiply them is from seeds sown in spring that usually germinate in a month or month and a half. It can also be made from new bulbs.

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This deciduous bulbous is an interesting tropical-looking garden plant. 

The geographical origin is found in South Africa. 

Although its origin may suggest that they are plants that develop in dry places is something quite different, since they inhabit areas of high areas where rainfall is very frequent in summer. 

For this reason they require a good dose of environmental humidity to progress in a timely manner. 

The genus hosts a small number of herbaceous, perennial and bulbous plants belonging to theHyacinthaceae family . 

To the whole species of Eucomisit is known as pineapple flowers or pineapple lily due to the plume of green bracts that appears in the upper part of the inflorescence. 

This is something very characteristic in many of these plants, in addition to the set of flowers of its inferior part that resembles to a great extent to the aspect of a pineapple. 

It is forming a nice wide rosette formed by fleshy leaves, elongated and wide forest green, with a thick central nerve, the edges of the leaves are gently wavy. 

From the center of the rosette emerges a robust stalk from which a floral spike surmounted by a tuft of short leaves emerges at its apex. 

The floral sticks appear erect and are speckled with purple spots, achieve 30 to 60 c

m height. Its flowering period corresponds to the months of July and August, the inflorescence has the quality of staying impeccable for quite some time. 

Each inflorescence can contain more than a hundred small, star-shaped, pale green flowers with purple-tinted edges. 

The flowers are grouped in a dense cluster and whose aroma is not exactly too pleasant, since in their natural habitat the pollination is carried out by the flies. 

While it is in its vegetative period it is necessary to water it freely and with more moderation in winter, mainly if it is too cold. 

From the spring it is necessary to fertilize it with a good quality organic fertilizer, which offers an adequate composition. 

The best location in the garden is in a semi-shaded area, tolerates the direct sun if it is not too strong or the leaves would burn. 

It can be accommodated indoors if it gives a lot of light with some morning sun hours. 

It is not resistant to frost so it can not be exposed, it is better to find a protected place during the winter months if it is grown in a pot. 

After flowering, pods containing brown seeds are produced. 

Crop specialists are capable of rooting pieces of leaves, but this is a job that requires certain knowledge in addition to having a space that has an adequate level of humidity.

Planting seeds is certainly a feasible method that can be done in spring or fall, but it can take more than two years before you see your first flower; Therefore, the simplest is the division of the bulbs. 

Don Burke

I am Don Burke, one of the authors at My Garden Guide.  I am a horticulturist that cultivates, grows, and cares for plants, ranging from shrubs and fruits to flowers. I do it in my own garden and in my nursery. I show you how to take care of your garden and how to perform garden landscaping in an easy way, step by step.I am originally from Sydney and I wrote in local magazines. Later on, I have decided, more than two decades ago, to create my own blog. My area of specialization is related to orchid care, succulent care, and the study of the substrate and the soil. Therefore, you will see many articles dedicated to these disciplines. I also provide advice about how to improve the landscape design of your garden.

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