Family: Liliaceae
Common Name: Pineapple Lily

Mainly native to South Africa, the 10 species of this small genus of bulbs make interesting fea­ture plants for the garden. The flower spikes are quite distinctive, bearing a tuft of leaves at the crown, resembling a pineapple. A single flower spike rises from each rosette of thick leaves and is densely covered with small, six-petalled flow­ers ranging from cream and green shades to pinkish purple. Long-lasting, they make excellent cut flowers.


E. autumnalis has long, strap-shaped, crinkly leaves from which arise 50-60 cm (20-24 in) long spikes of drooping, bell-shaped, greenish flowers, in late summer and autumn.

E. bicolor, to 75 cm (30 in), has green flowers with purple margins, in late summer, topped by a large tuft of leaves.

E. comosa, pineapple lily, is striking with long, lance-shaped, crinkly leaves, spotted with purple on the undersides, and flower spikes comprised of masses of star-shaped, white flowers. The varieties produce pinkish purple flowers.

E. pole-evansii, tallest of the species, grows to 2 m (6 ft), the top 60 cm (24 in) encircled by open, soft green flowers with cream centers.


These lilies are easy to grow both in the garden and in pots. In the garden, plant the bulbs 15 cm (6 in) deep in a well-drained, warm, sheltered position in full sun. During spring, they can be potted in a good quality potting mix. Water generously (luring summer but very seldom during winter. Once flower spikes appear, these plants can be fed with weak, liquid manure or soluble, organic plant food. Propagate from the side shoots or offsets which develop around the parent bulb. In very cold areas, grow these bulbs in a cool green-house or conservatory.


Zone 8.

Eucharis      Eucryphia