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Polianthes tuberosa

Tuberose

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Key information

Plant type

Summer/autumn blooming bulb

Flower colour

White

Feature

Scented flowers

Hardiness

Tender

Skill level

Experienced

photo by Visions, copyright GAP Photos (267470)

Plant details

Polianthes tuberosa is grown for its spikes of tubular, waxy white, summer flowers which are very strongly scented. It hails from the warmer climes of Mexico so in the UK it is best grown in a container or planted outside in late spring and then lifted when the foliage dies down in autumn. The tubers should then be stored like dahlias in a warm, dry place until spring. If growing in a container, use John Innes No2 compost and grow in a well-lit spot. Water moderately in the growing season and feed every fortnight. Reduce watering as the leaves begin to die down at the end of the season and keep dry until the following spring. To propagate, remove offsets when plants are dormant. The Royal Horticultural Society have given it their prestigious Award of Garden Merit.

Family: Agavaceae

Genus: Polianthes

Species: tuberosa

Plant type: Summer/autumn blooming bulb

Flower colour: White

Foliage colour: Mid-green

Feature: Scented flowers

Sun exposure: Full sun

Soil: Well-drained/light

Hardiness: Tender

Skill level: Experienced

Height: 120cm

Spread: 15cm

Time to divide plants: November to January


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