Schizostylis Adds Fall Color


Schizostylis is a welcome addition to the fall blooming collection.  This perennial,  also known as Kaffir lily or Crimson Flag,  grows up to two feet tall and has a grass-like foliage.  It is evergreen in warmer climates, but will survive down to USDA zone 7.  It blooms in shades of pink, salmon and red with a delicate star shape and makes a long lasting cut flower.  The flower spikes do not need staking and resemble that of a small gladiolus.  Schizostylis coccinea grows from rhizomes  which can be divided in the springtime.  Plant in full sun to part shade in moist well-drained soil.  This plant is native to South Africa and can be planted as a bulb in spring or from a container anytime.  Other unusual summer bloomers are the Crinum lily, Pineapple lily and Guernsey lily.  A layer of mulch in the winter will provide protection from the cold for Schizostylus.  This perennial treasure is noteworthy.   Just when many flowers begin to fade, and color all but disappears from the garden, blossoms of the Crimson Flag will emerge as if from nowhere to lighten up the landscape into the winter months.  One of my favorites.


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