Spider Lilies – Hymenocallis latifolia

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There was this clump of what I thought was overcrowded Amaryllis in a planter in my front yard that the landscaper dug up for me. The bulbs were so crammed in I couldn’t dig them out. So after Jon gave me a bucket full of bulbs, I separated them and spaced them out at 2′ on center in the front of a long bed in my backyard sometime last summer. There are probably at least 50 of these now.

I have been waiting for two years to see what kind of Amaryllis I had found in my front yard; come to find out it is not an Amaryllis at all! This spring I kept going out to check because I was waiting for a gigantic mass of color from the Amaryllis. Then June came around and I decided maybe the bulbs hadn’t been in the ground long enough. When I spotted this flower in my backyard, I recognized the genus from having Peruvian Daffodils in Atlanta. They were not quite cold hardy there, but similar to this with a creamy yellow color. Not quite sure what I had blooming, research was started on the plant, I found that this is a Florida native hardy in Zone 10 and 11. The advice was given to plant a single bulb 3 or even 5 feet apart so the clump would grow together. The next bit of advice I encountered was that the Dreaded Lubber Grasshoppers loved to eat them:

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The Lubber was dispatched shortly after the picture was taken – 5 of his friends had been in the Lilies before and had eaten the first flowers..I may be having a Spider Lily sale soon as I planted at least twice as many as I should have.

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