Peruvian Lily

An exotic-looking flower - coming in all shades and colors.
Common name : Peruvian Lily
Scientific name : Alstroemeria
Family : Alstroemeriaceae
Category : Perennials
Type of plant : Perennial
Flowery
Flowery
Frost resistant
Frost resistant
Alstroemeria - the Peruvian lily or lily of the Incas - is a genus of flowering plants in the family Alstroemeriaceae. They are almost all native to South America - note that species of Alstroemeria from Chile are winter-growing plants while those of Brazil are summer-growing. Plants of this genus grow from a cluster of tubers, with fertile and sterile stems, the fertile stems of some species reaching 1.5 meters in height. The leaves are alternately arranged and resupinate, twisted on the petioles so that the undersides face up. The leaves are variable in shape and the blades have smooth edges. The flowers are solitary or sometimes borne in umbels. The flower, which resembles a miniature lily, has six tepals each up to 5 centimeters long. They come in many shades of red, orange, purple, green, and white, flecked and striped and streaked with darker colors. There are six curving stamens. The stigma has three lobes. The fruit is a capsule with three valves. One common species is Alstroemeria ligtu, but many hybrids and at least 190 cultivars have been developed, featuring many different colors, including white, yellow, orange, apricot, pink, red, purple, and lavender. Most popular and showy hybrids commonly grown today result from crosses between species from Chile (winter-growing) with species from Brazil (summer-growing), resulting in plants that are evergreen, or nearly so, and flower for most of the year. Some alstroemerias have escaped cultivation and become weeds, such as Alstroemeria pulchella. and A. aurea, now weeds in Australia.

Sowing & planting

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Flowering

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Caracteristics

Exposition
Water needs
Granulométrie plants.granulometry_4
Frost-resistance Medium
Zone USDA 9a
Height 50 - 80
pH 7 - 8

Plant my peruvian lily

Plant the alstroemeria tubers in the garden, 20 cm deep in August, in the sun or in semi shade. Prepare the soil by digging (to decompact without necessarily turning it, with a pitchfork or a broadfork), scratching and raking. Add an amendment like mature manure if the soil is not very rich. In an alpine greenhouse, grow them in a mixture of garden soil, leaf mold and coarse sand. Alstroemeria have fragile roots that do not support wounds, so be gentle.

Water my peruvian lily

Water grownup plants until the water that you pour does not rush into the ground, and forms a small puddleto their fill, even if it is less frequent. Unless otherwise specified, do not wet the foliage: the plants "drink" by their roots. Seedlings should be watered in fine rain. Keep them permanently moist to get germination.

Weed my peruvian lily

In perennial species, weeding also means working your flowerbed – don't let anything develop too quickly to the detriment of others.

Cut down my peruvian lily

Deciduous perennials don't keep their above-ground growth during the winter, they survive with their underground systems. At the end of the season, the foliage and the dried flower stems can be cut off without second thought. Don't touch the root or the future buds that are emerging from the soil

Fertilize my peruvian lily

Alstroemers like a rich soil: fertilize early with organic materials that will decompose slowly; spread young compost, well decomposed or manure at the base of the plants, and incorporate it on 10 cm with a claw. This is usually done in winter for the earthworms and soil bacteria to have enough time to work.

Propagate my peruvian lily

Propagation can be done by sowing in pots under shelter in the spring, followed by transplanting the seedlings into a peat cup (the roots are fragile, the peat pot will avoid a new pelletization). It is also possible to divide the old clumps in autumn or March.

Mulch my peruvian lily

Mulching the perennial plants will save you from watering and weeding and will even fertilize the soil a bit as it decomposes. When choosing, know that dry wood chips are the most inert, but they will last for a longer time. Fresh wood chips and leaves enrich the soil but must be changed often. Grass cuttings are to be used mixed with something else in a layer that is at most 1 cm thick. Mulch with a thickness of at least 5 cm to provide a good level of efficiency.

Check on my peruvian lily

Slugs and snails are fond of young shoots of alstroemeria. They pierce and cut foliage, consume sprouted seeds, seedlings, foliage and green waste. If you see any, install beer traps or ash barriers. In the greenhouse, watch for red spiders, and spray them.

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