Sprekelia — commonly called Aztec lily–bears dark crimson flowers resembling orchids above foliage that look like that of the daffodil. Spreklia blooms 6 to 8 weeks after planting. In mild climates, it may flower several time a year.
Plant Sprekelia in a sunny border. It is most effective when planted in groups. Sprekelia is also an attractive container plant. It can be grown in pots like amaryllis when repotted every 3 to 4 years.
Sprekelia is a single species genus. It is native to rocky slopes in Mexico and Guatemala. It can be grown as a perennial in regions where winters are mild. In cold winter regions, it can be grown as a potted annual.
Get to Know Sprekelia
- Plant type: Bulb.
- Growing zones and range: Zones 8 to 10.
- Hardiness: Hardy to Zone 8
- Height and width: Up to 1 foot (.3m) tall.
- Foliage: Straplike leaves that look like that of daffodil.
- Flowers: Bright red flowers have three upper segments and three lower ones rolled into a cylinder for part of their length, resembling orchids.
- Bloom time: Spring where hardy, summer when grown as annual.
- Uses: Borders where hardy, or in pots.
- Garden companions: Baby’s breath (Gypsophila paniculata)
- Common name: Aztec lily, Jacobean Lily, St. James lily.
- Botanical name: Sprekelia
- Family name: Amaryllidaceae
- Origin: Rocky slopes in Mexico and Guatemala
Where to Plant Sprekelia
- Plant Sprekelia in full sun.
- Plant Sprekelia in deep, rich soil.
When to Plant Sprekelia
- Plant Sprekelia in fall.
Planting and Spacing Sprekelia
- Plant Sprekelia bulbs 3-4 inches (7.6-10cm) deep and 8 inches (20.3cm) apart, with necks above soil level.
- Sprekelia are most effective planted in groups.
How to Water and Feed Sprekelia
- Give Sprekelia regular water during growth period and bloom.
- Fertilize Sprekelia with an organic bloom food in spring.
How to Care for Sprekelia
- Where winters are cold, plant Sprekelia outdoors in spring; lift plants in fall when foliage yellows and store over winter (leave the dry tops on; do not remove them).
- Sprekelia grown in pots should be repotted every 3 to 4 years.
Sprekelia Pests and Diseases
- Sprekelia have few disease problems.
- Sprekelia have few pest problems.
- Separate small offsets when dormant in early autumn.
- Divide small Sprekelia bulbs after blooming.
Sprekelia Varieties to Grow
- Sprekelia formosissima, often sold as Amaryllis formosissima, is a bulb native to Mexico; foliage looks like the foliage of the daffodil; stems grow to 12 inches (30cm) tall and are toped with dark crimson blooms that resemble orchids; most effective planted in groups; plants may flower several times a year in mild climates.