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Plant Profile: Crocosmia (Crocosmia x Curtonus ‘Lucifer’)

Crocosmia 'Lucifer'For a real color punch in a hot border Crocosmia will fill the bill. The unusual flowers rise up on tall arching stems and are striking against the tall attractive gladiola-like foliage. The clumps grow from corms and slowly spread. The flowers attract humming birds and butterflies and are good in bouquets; I used them in the bridal bouquet with rust colored calla lilies and alstroemerias for a fall wedding.

Type: Herbaceous perennial.

Bloom: Scarlet and yellow flowers hang from stiffly arching tall stems in summer.

Size: 3-4’ H x 1’ W.

Light: Full sun to partial shade, but prefers full sun.

Soil: Average, well drained soil.

Hardiness: Zones 5-9.

Care: In areas with winter temperatures below 0 F, lift corms in the fall.

Pests and Diseases: Spider mite can cause problems.

Propagation: Division or by corm offset.

Companion plants: Scarlet Asiatic lily such as ‘Gran Paridiso’; Sneezeweed (Helenium) ‘Moerheim Beauty’; canna with dark burgundy foliage such as ‘Wyoming’ (has orange flower); butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa); dahlia ‘Bishop o Llandaff’.

Comments: Excellent cut flower; attracts butterflies and hummingbirds. Tolerates heat and humidity.

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