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I have one potted up, healthy Eucomis plant that has now finished flowering.  It still has the flower spike on the plant.  What do I do with it now, to I let the flower spike die down or do I chop it off, and can I collect seed (not sure which part is the seed)?

Thanks.

Hi GD2

My green Eucomis bicolor bulbs have nearly all finished flowering now .

Seed is produced (hard black coal-like about 2mm diameter) , from the triangular green seed-pods which should start developing soon .

Yours is one of the burgundy forms (very nice too) , so I would assume the 'above terms' still apply

If you don't want seed , cut the spike off anytime but leave the foliage to feed the bulb . I grew some from seed years ago , very easy but took 5-7 years to get to flowering size .

Obelixx

Like any bulb, if you want to maintain vigour and build it up for next year you remove the spent plant stalk and feed it.

If you want babies, let it seed.   Stand it in a tray of gravel mixed with some compost and you'll get babies germinating from fallen seed that you can grow on but it will take a great deal of patience and potting on before they get to flowering size.  Alternatively, feed it and let the seeds mature on the plant then collect the seed and sow in trays or cells.

Thank you Paul & Obelixx for your speedy replies - I wish growing these Eucomis from seed was as speedy!  I did notice some large black (seeds) growths where the flowers had finished, but I didn't realize they were the seeds.  However if this plant is a bulb (I bought it at a plant sale) then perhaps there will be small bulblets in the pot now too which I could divide and nurture?

I will cut the flower stem off and hope that the plant will overwinter in the pot and produce another striking flower stem next year.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge of this unusual plant.

Each stem (foliage and flower spike ) indicates one bulb .

Two stems normally means the bulb had divided . Only time will tell .

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I think the plant may be pot bound, so I will try repotting it when I cut the stem, feed and water it too.

Obelixx

To be honest, that pots looks a wee bit small.  in your location you should be able to grow them in teh ground as you don't get hard frosts.   

Fairygirl

I'd have thought that too Obelixx. I would need to overwinter it here GD, but I'd expect your conditions to be favourable for it. They're lovely plants  


There was a small discussion about these  earlier in the year, and it made me tempted to get another one. It would need to come into the house though - don't know if my cold frame would be enough protection   

Joyce21

GD - I grow mine in a large pot about one foot square and 18 inches deep for three bulbs.

Over the years they have multiplied and have been divided.

Fairygirl

Joyce- do you think if I did some in pots, they would be ok against the house wall for me, or would they need a bit more than that?

Joyce21

Fairy, I just move the pot to the back of the house for the winter and the eucomis have survived for over ten years. I think it's worth trying.

Fairygirl

Might be tempted then Joyce - don't tell the girls if I buy one or two..... 

Joyce21

I started with one Fairy just to see if it would survive. Good luck

Yes, I had thought that the pot was too small too, I bought the plant last year and didn't know what it was - in fact the poor plant looked like it was on it's last legs but I bought it our of politeness to be truthful.  The stall holder (at the open garden afternoon) looked about as deflated as the plant did until I bought it, she was delighted to have a sale!

I will be putting it into another, but larger pot soon. I feel it deserves to be shown off for the beauty and because it is so unusual, rather than lost in the flower bed with all the run of the mill of plants. At least in a pot I can keep a more careful eye on it too.  I had never seen an Eucomis before this one.

Mine are planted and stay out  in between the buttressed roots of a Metasequoia ; west facing and free draining .

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Joyce21

Oops!

I would like to have the burgundy ones too.

Fairygirl

I only had the burgundy one Joyce, but I quite like the white one too - I like greeny whites generally    

Joyce21

I wonder if the greeny white one is hardier?

Fairygirl

I think it is- but not sure what I'm basing that on  

Hostafan1

I bought 4 large bulbs in Amsterdam last year for 3 Euros. Bargain.

Now I see how long they take from seed, I'm glad I cut the flowers off and didn't collect seed.