Often underrated by Australian gardeners Stenomesson are a large genus of bulb originally from South America Peru, Ecuador, Columbia, Bolivia and Chile. The bulbs are long lasting, flowers are reliable and attractive and they are ideal for our climate.
Stenomesson pearcei with its bright green leaves and large attractive yellow flowers are a sought after species. The variegated form, S. variegatum has attractive drooping yellow flowers with green tips.
Stenomesson are an attractive and relatively easy to grow bulb, a sunny well drained position, or in a container. Best planted fairly deep to encourage good flowering, especially in containers. All species prefer a dry winter dormant period so a well drained soil is essential. They do grow well in pots or containers, but look for deep ones.
Propagation is from seed of by dividing offsets, if you want lots of offsets plant shallow, you may not get flowers, but you will get bulblets.
Growing Conditions summary.
- Position – Full sun.
- Soil – Well drained.
- Fertiliser – Use a general purpose bulb fertiliser in spring.
- Try to provide a dryish dormancy period ( winter)
- Water once a week once new growth commences.
- Flowering period – Late summer to autumn.
Species and varieties
Some species have been reallocated to the Clinanthus genus. S. variegatum is now Clinanthus variegatus
- S. aurantiacum,
- S. chloranthum,
- S. coccineum,
- S. incarnatum.