Crinum is a genus of about 180 species of perennial plants that have large showy flowers on leafless stems, and develop from bulbs. They are found along the sides of streams and lakes in tropical and subtropical areas worldwide.
Crinum pedunculatum also known as the Swamp Lily, River Lily or Mangrove Lily, is a bulbous perennial found in stream and tidal areas of the east coast of Queensland and New South Wales, Australia as well as New Guinea and some Pacific Islands.
This plant may reach 2 or 3 metres high with a similar spread. The leaves are strappy and up to 2m long by 15cm wide.
The flowers occur from November to March, they are white and about 10cm across in clusters of 10-25. These have a pleasant perfume are followed by rounded, seed capsules 2 to 5cm across.
The crinum lily was used by aboriginals to soothe marine stings, especially blue-bottle stings.
The leaf is broken and the sticky web inside is wrapped onto the sting. This numbs the skin and calms the irritation.
You can plant the seeds, either directly where you want them to grow or into pots.
Ensure that the soil drains well and they are positioned in full sun or they will accept light shade.
I have a number of these plants in the garden and I collected the seeds after they had finished flowering about 3 weeks ago.
I put the seeds into small pots filled with seed raising mixture and have kept them moist since.
So far about a third have sent up a shoot.
It has been warm and humid these past few weeks which would have helped to speed up the germination.
The major pests for Crinums in Queensland are the smooth black, white and yellow striped caterpillars of the moth Spodoptera picta which can demolish a young plant very quickly.
Also, snails and slugs find the large fleshy leaves tasty.