Revise Your Knowledge on Spider Lily Plant Care

Revise Your Knowledge on Spider Lily Plant Care

 The spider lily or the Hymenocallis is from the Amaryllis family which is a genus of the American plants. The Hymenocallis has more than 60 species, they are all bulbous perennials. The herbaceous plants are native to the US, Mexico, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. Some of the species are known for their ornamental values – they grow around the globe in warmer regions. Some of them are naturalized in parts of Africa generally on the tropical islands. The flower stalks of the spider lilies arise from the basal rosettes of the strap-shaped leaves. The flowers are fragrant and come in a wide range of colours. The most popular colour varieties are green, white, and yellow. The flowers feature 6 narrow and curved petals which are attached to a shallow-like cup that can be seen in the fused stamens. This leaves an effect of a spidery daffodil – thus the name, Spider Lily.

Most of the spider lilies are grown in warm greenhouses. Some are also grown in sheltered sunny spots, especially where the ground doesn’t freeze – the plant can’t tolerate that. Give them good drainage soil which is rich with organic matter and they will grow just fine. There are many hybrid species as well. Many species from the Caribbean and US are found in wet areas like the marshes, streambanks, and seashores. It is said that some of the rare species also have floating seeds. While the other species grow on grassy slopes in the hills and mountains. The family is quite wide with lots of different species.

Spider lily bulbs

The spider lily bulbs themselves are very attractive. Even when the flowers don’t bloom, the plant can still be used for decorative purposes. The creamy white and green foliage is accompanied by spider-like flowers. The flowers can be seen blooming in the mid-summer. The spider lilies like shades and can tolerate low light as well. The bulbs generally winter over in ponds as long as they stay below the freeze line. The long slender segments of the plant radiate from round centres, which results in the whole spider-like bloom.

You need to irrigate the spider lilies when they actively grow. Generous watering is something they like especially in the growing season. Keep the soil moist. When the winter comes, reduce the watering levels, just make sure they don’t dry out and that would be enough. The plant likes bright sunlight just as much they like to stay watered. 6 or more hours of sunlight each day is recommended to get enough flowers. To apply fertilizer, do so in the spring and when you plant them. If you are from a cold place, protect your bulbs with a deep, dry layer of mulch. Dig up the bulbs carefully and leave the soil around roots, and put them in ventilated and shady place when the frost starts. Try maintaining a relative humidity of 40 % to make sure the flowers stay healthy.

Spider lily leaves

The leaves of the spider lily look attractive as well. The long strappy leaves of the plant, most of them resemble agapanthus when the flowers aren’t yet bloomed. The leaves are darker green and they tend to stay slightly upright and stay in distinct ranks. The upright leaf arrangement of the plant does catch and hide falling leaves – this is the reason they are one of the best low-maintenance plants with high leaf drops. There are around 60 to 70 species in the genus. And the leaves do differ in different species.

Hymenocallis flower

The warm and wet weather is perfect to grow spider lilies. They are part of the local landscape and people do consider them to be native species. The exotic white flowers have long and hanging petals which distinguish them from other lilies. The central staminal cup formed looks exotic on the membrane of the staminodes. Hymenocallis means ‘beautiful membrane’ in English. The name is justified. The flowers also stay on display for a long time. One can see it blooming at the start of the rainy season. In every wet period, flowers would come flushing in. the flowers open and starts spreading their beautiful fragrance and stays for about 2 to 3 days. The flowers are tough, and look presentable and manicured every time. They are absolutely low maintenance as we said.

Red spider lily

Stems are about 30 to 70 cm long

The red spider lily or the Lycoris radiata is also known as the red magic lily or the equinox flower. The flowers are originally from China, Korea, and Nepal. They were introduced in Japan and then to the US later. They flower in the late summer or autumn and like heavy rainfall. They flower before the leaves appear fully on the 30 to 70 cm long stems. The beautiful red flowers are arranged in umbels. The irregular individual flowers which are curved backward are the perfect pick for you this rainy season.

Spider lily-white

Consist of 6 to 8 eye-catching boasting umbels

The lycoris albiflora is the botanical name of the White spider lily. They are perfect for the late summer garden. They are bulbous and perennial. There are about 6 to 8 boasting eye-catching umbels in the beautiful white flower. The curled petals and the long stamens are what make the flowers unique. The narrow creamy pink stripes in the flowers in the centre at the bottom generally fade to white with each day's passing. They can grow up to 18 to 24 inches tall and about 12 inches wide. Give them full sun to light shade with well-drained and organically rich soil to make sure the flowers stay healthy.

Blue spider lily

Trumpet-shaped flowers

The Lycoris sprengeri is perfect for late summer. They are charming and are perennial like most other spider lily plants. They also have 4 to 6 fragrant umbels in the electric blue spider lily. The flowers are trumpet-shaped and are about 2 inches across. 6 slightly reflexed tepals are adorned with tie-dye blue shades on their tips. The flowers generally appear on the naked stems. The foliage is narrow and strap-shaped. This plant can grow up to 12 to 18 inches tall and half of it wide. The blue spider lily grows best in organically rich and well-drained soil.

Beach spider lily

Bulb-based flower

Like the other spider lilies, the beach spider lily is also a bulb-based flower. If grown in pots, they demand a pot with a decent size like about half a gallon or maybe more. Give them plenty of water and sunlight so that they grow healthy. They can grow about 2 feet in height. The flowers would add a foot extra. Flowers emerge from the end of the 2 feet leaves. The botanical name of the plant is Hymenocallis littoralis.

Pink spider lily

Cold-hardy flower

Commonly known as the surprise lily, the Pink lycoris flower stalks are unique and they appear overnight. They bring a surprise with them and appear in the late summer. The sweet fragrant pink flowers look lovely when taken proper care of. The flowers are trumpet-shaped. They are one of the most cold-hardy among the spider lily family.

Giant spider lily

Glossy greenish-red leaves

The giant spider lily, as the name suggests is the largest and rises from a bulb that is about 3 to 4 inches thick. The floral tube can bear about 6 petals and sepals and are about 6 inches long as well. They bloom red and pink fragrant flowers and glossy greenish-red leaves which reach a length of 2 to 4 feet. They grow in USDA hardiness zones 8B through 11.

Yellow spider lily 


Have 18 to 24 inches long stalks

The yellow spider lily is also referred to as the golden spider lily. They are known to glow with their yellow-gold-like colour. They are also popularly known as the hurricane lilies, as the soaking rains of a hurricane can help them bloom within a week. The flowers are sized like a softball. They can have 18 to 24 inches long stalks. The bulb is generally for warmer zones ( zone 8b to 10). Give them enough sun, especially in the winter. Planting 4 to 6 bulbs per square foot gives the best results.


What does spider lily symbolize?

According to legends throughout Asia, it is said that these flowers grow where people part ways, but for good. It symbolizes the cycle of rebirth.

How poisonous are spider lilies?

Spider lilies are poisonous to humans and animals. They cause low toxicity if eaten and can cause symptoms like abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting.

Is spider lily an indoor plant?

Spider lily can be grown both indoors and outdoors. If grown in pots, remember that they need a good size of pots. Ensure they get a decent amount of light and water wherever they grow.

What does the white spider lily represent?

The white spider lily is a symbol of purity. They are said to bring chastity in life.

Why is the red spider lily called the 'flower of death'?

It is because they protect the dead from wild animals or rats. They are used in Japanese funerals.

Why are the tips of my spider plant leaves turning brown?

The reason might be the usage of tap water. Chlorine, minerals, and fluoride in the tap water can turn the leaves brown.

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