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What is Crinum?

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  • Written By: Jacob Queen
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 05 October 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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Crinum is a family of plants with over 100 different species. There are varieties of crinum in a diverse range of locations, including Australia, America, Asia and Africa. Crinums are generally known for producing large, colorful flower bulbs, and some people say that they look a bit like lilies. Many crinum varieties are frequently used for landscaping.

There is generally quite a bit of variation among species of crinum, and sometimes they can be hard to recognize as members of the crinum family. Some of them actually look enough like lilies that their common names have the word lily in them, including the wine lily and milk lily. The plants come in many different colors, and sometimes the flower shapes can even be quite different and vary significantly in terms of foliage.

Starting with seeds is the most recommended approach to growing crinum. Many experts recommend planting with slow-release fertilizer and a reasonable quantity of compost. Most varieties are considered fairly hardy, and they can tolerate low-moisture environments, but they generally do a lot better with a little bit of watering. Sometimes in very dry situations, the plants may survive, but they may not produce any flowers. Extremely wet soil has the potential to kill the plants, and they generally don’t do well in cold environments.

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In terms of care, adding occasional liquid fertilizer to help the plants stay strong is a common recommendation along with regular watering, if possible. Crinums do very well in full sun, but they also tolerate a certain amount of shade. They can be a good choice for areas where sun isn’t necessarily available all day long. In fact, many people plant certain species under trees in full shade.

A type of crinum called latifolium is used in some Asian countries as an herbal remedy. Some people in these areas believe that the plant can help with various disorders involving the prostate and the female reproductive organs. Certain people also think this plant has the potential to make a person live longer by helping clean the body of toxic chemicals and causing the body to heal itself more efficiently.

Crinum varieties can also be poisonous if taken in large enough quantities, and this includes latifolium. The plants can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and severe stomach upset. It is not generally considered extremely dangerous, but most would describe the effects as relatively unpleasant. This poison also helps protect the plants from many pests that may bother other species.

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