Eucomis Cultivation Instructions
Eucomis, or Pineapple Lilies, have attractive foliage as well as interesting flowers. The plants typically grow 18-30" tall and equally wide. This makes them suitable for edging a walk or pathway. They're also good accent plants for the front or middle of a flowerbed. Good companions include coreopsis, sedum, begonias, calla lilies and bergenias.
Eucomis may appear exotic, with their blooms stacked on stalks emerging from a tuft of green or bronze leaves, but they're actually very easy to grow. They can be successfully grown in containers on the patio, or a sunny border in the garden. Simply plant the bulbs in spring after all danger of frost has passed. Make sure the soil temperature is 65 degrees or warmer, as eucomis bulbs will not grow in cold soil. It typically takes 3 to 4 weeks for the plant's leaves to begin emerging from the bulb.
In northern zones, eucomis grow best in full sun. In areas where the sun is more intense, however, the plants benefit from some shade during the hottest part of the day. They are generally hardy down to about 20°F. In colder areas they may be grown as annuals, or the bulbs can be dug up and stored indoors in the winter for replanting the following spring.
Grow Eucomis in loose, well-drained soil. Heavy or soggy soil may cause the bulbs to rot. At the start of the growing season, it's best to keep the soil barely moist. Once the plant has several leaves, start watering consistently, keeping the soil relatively moist until after flowering.
Feed with a dose of liquid fertilizer in early spring and occasionally add a weak tomato feed when watering in summer. They may require supporting. In late autumn, apply a thick mulch of bark over the plant. Old leaves and flower stems should be removed only once they turn yellow.