Trash Heap Gem

“Trash Heap Gem”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana

About four years ago, while walking around my sister’s garden, I spied something familiar looking in the trash heap.  It was two small, slightly dried crinums.  I asked her if I could have them, and of course, she agreed saying if she had known I would want them, she would have potted them up for me instead of throwing them away.  She told me just to soak them in some water for an hour or two, and they would revive.  I did just that, and they seemed to be none the worse for wear.  I planted them in the back garden where there is not too much shade.  They slowly grew, but it was evident they were not getting enough sun.  Then Hurricane Katrina came through, knocked down some trees, and  provided more sun for these two scrawny plants.  Last year the larger of the two bulbs had two bloom stalks, and the smaller had one.

This year they are doing much better.  The larger one has grown considerably and has five bloom stalks which are just starting to open.  The smaller one looks like it may have three stalks this year.


Crinums grow from large bulbs, similar to amaryllis bulbs just a lot bigger and have been a Southern favorite for years.  It is said that you cannot kill a crinum, and after sitting for several days on a trash heap and still surviving to produce lovely flowers, I believe the ones I got from my sister will last forever.


  1. patientgardener said,

    April 24, 2009 at 5:37 am

    I have one of these and it was planted about 2 years ago and it has done nothing. It has some leaves but that is that. It has plenty of sun so I dont know whether it is just a case of waiting. I need to move it though as I have redesigned the shape of the border and it is now right on the edge. I tried to dig it up but the bulb/root goes down a long way – not sure how I will get it out.

    When I bought it it was being sold in the garden centre as a dry bulb/corm so they must be tough.

  2. Randy said,

    April 24, 2009 at 5:49 am

    Trash to Treasure! I love Crinums!

  3. April said,

    April 24, 2009 at 9:15 am

    I love crinums! I found mine at our hunting camp and they have not yet bloomed so I don’t know what color they are! I am hoping they are a pretty pink like yours 🙂

  4. Jan said,

    April 24, 2009 at 3:44 pm

    PG, they do sometimes take several years to start blooming, but once they start they soon are sending out many stalks of blooms. These bulbs are big, real big when they get a little age on them. They can get as big as footballs, so you may have to do some real digging to get it out to move it.

    Randy, I love going through old Southern towns and seeing the crinums in every one’s yards.

    April, I planted some white ones last year, and I can’t wait for them to get big enough to bloom. You were lucky to find some free ones.

  5. Chandramouli.S said,

    April 24, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    Love their pink buds! Wonder how they’d look like in bloom!

  6. Jan said,

    April 27, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    Chandramouli, I love this particular shade of pink.

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