Common name: Peruvian Lily, or Lily of the Incas | Blooming season: Summer and Autumn
👍 Loves: Sunny, free-draining soil, and shelter | 👎 Hates: Too much shade, very wet soil
Alstroemeria is a vibrant, exotic-looking flower that is perfect for any flower bed or floral display. This cluster-formation flower is also known as the Peruvian Lily, or Lily of the Incas, and they are quite simple to take care of. As well as easy maintenance, the Alstroemeria is a perennial plant, meaning it will live for many years, flowering into full bloom in summer and autumn.
Alstroemeria look similar to other types of lilies, but they are quite simple to identify when you know what to look for. They grow almost in a natural bouquet and come in a variety of lovely colours.
|Colours||Vibrant purple, red, pink, cream, yellow, and orange|
|Identifying Marks||Splotches, small stripes and spots or speckles|
|Foliage||Leafy, green stems|
When to plant Alstroemeria
Plant in the spring or autumn. Ensuring you are planting into slightly damp and warm soil will help the roots of the alstroemeria establish faster, so try not to plant them when the weather is cold. If you choose to plant in spring, wait until the temperature has started to rise and there is no risk of frost.
You can plant them in the summer, but the drier soil might make it harder for the alstroemeria to establish itself. If you do this, water regularly and ensure there is ample shelter from the wind to avoid the new plant being disturbed.
Where to plant
🌱 flowerbed or pots | ☁️ partial shade | ☂️ shelter
Alstroemeria can be planted up in pots or directly into the soil. Either way, they should always be placed in a sheltered but not overly shady spot. It’s vital that they get full sun for most of the day. We find that our alstroemerias thrive when planted on borders by a hedge or shrub. They also do particularly well when planted with other perennials like Bergenia, Delphinium, and Geranium.
Growing and care tips
Although this flower is not the most difficult to look after and is generally quite hardy, there are certain tips you should be aware of to ensure they can reach full-bloom year after year.
Watering: Keep the compost that the alstroemeria is in evenly moist. Water thoroughly during dry spells, but do not let the flower’s roots sit in very wet soil for a long time as they are very susceptible to rot. A good watering routine will help these flowers to bloom for longer.
Fertilizing: Fertilize during the summer – you can use a tomato feed or any nitrogen-rich, water-soluble fertilizer (10-5-5, or 12-4-8).
Pests: young alstroemeria, or alstroemeria that has just started to bloom, will quickly become a victim of slugs and snails. Place a barrier or deterrent around the flowers when you start to notice new growth in the spring.
How to deadhead alstroemeria
Gently pull the flowers off from where each cluster forms once they have started to fade. This will promote better growth than cutting flowers off individually.
How to divide alstroemeria tubers
Despite being a hardy enough flower, alstroemeria can be a bit tricky to divide. This needs to be done to ensure the newer, healthier tubers aren’t affected by the old, decaying tuber. You should divide your alstroemeria tubers in April, being careful not to damage the delicate roots of the flowers.
You can find a great step-by-step guide with images here.
How to propagate alstroemeria
Propagation can happen after dividing the tubers. You should cut the plant around 6 inches above the ground and wait up to 15 days before choosing the rhizomes you want to take to propagate. Dig these up gently, leaving new shoots alone, and re-plant them into pots.
Find more details on propagating alstroemeria here.
Angela Waxler is an ex florist, a professional gardener and has been working in the industry for well over 25 years. Angela has worked with brands all over the world during her career.