Ask a Question forum: Crocosmia (Lucifer's tongue)

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Name: Gail
East TN (Zone 6b)
Ghd606
Aug 18, 2014 2:26 PM CST
I have Lucifer's tongue as a backdrop next to a fence with a lavender bush in front. The Lucifer's tongue is overtaking a flower bed. Is there a way to thin the corms out? Can the leaves be trained not to flop over so much.

Crocosima is the horticulture name. My apology for the 'autofill.'

Thanks.
[Last edited by Ghd606 - Aug 18, 2014 6:45 PM (+)]
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Aug 18, 2014 6:25 PM CST
Hi Gail, I don't know what plant Lucifer's Tongue or Crocodilians is so I can't be of help but I just wanted to say Welcome to All Things Plants! If you can supply more information as to what type of plant you are referring to I'm sure someone will be able to offer advice.

~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Gail
East TN (Zone 6b)
Ghd606
Aug 18, 2014 6:49 PM CST
Sorry for the autofill....horticulture name is Crocosmia. It has long green leaves similar to gladiolas. It blooms with red flowers. Hummingbirds love it. It's just taking over.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 18, 2014 6:56 PM CST
Hi Gail,
You can surely dig the crocosmia up & thin the bulbs out. You might want to wait until the weather cools & they go dormant though. Just replant the ones you want to keep. I can't answer about the leaves flopping over but I doubt there's anything you can do about that.
I'm sure someone with more experience will be on soon & address that issue.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Aug 18, 2014 7:05 PM CST
Aaah, Crocosmia! There is a popular cultivar called Crocosmia (Crocosmia 'Lucifer') but I've never heard of Lucifer's Tongue. I found a cultivar in the database called 'Lucifer's Children' but nothing for 'Lucifer's Tongue'.

Here is the general database entry for Crocosmia: The Crocosmias Database

I have Crocosmia (Crocosmia masoniorum) but haven't tried thinning it out.

I purchased some leaf ring thingies at Home Depot to hold Crocosmia leaves up. They look like this and come in different lengths:
http://xiyuan0wire0mesh.en.ec21.com/Plant_Support_Wire--7816... I may change to this type which will hold more leaves: http://www.homedepot.com/s/plant%2520supports?NCNI-5
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 18, 2014 7:17 PM CST
I thought I might have thinned mine out too much last year. Ha, ha. It's huge and I'll have to dig out more in the late fall as the leaves yellow, signalling it's okay to dig and divide. The leaves in a large clump cannot be contained and prevented from flopping unless you use twine or something similar. A peony ring might be used for a lesser amount of crocosmia.


Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Aug 18, 2014 7:21 PM CST
Pirl, Wow ... beautiful!
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Gail
East TN (Zone 6b)
Ghd606
Aug 18, 2014 7:25 PM CST
Thanks to all of you. Pirl...that's what mine look like! I have the stakes Plantladyin suggested...can't contain them. The friend who gave them to me said 'invasive', but I had no idea they would be this invasive. I tried thinning last year, but just can't seem to get all the corms. Will try again in the fall. Thanks again.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 18, 2014 7:26 PM CST
I agree
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 18, 2014 7:26 PM CST
Oops, cross posted.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 18, 2014 7:49 PM CST
Thanks, Lin, Gail and Ann. Now I wonder what a monster I'd have had if I kept the hundred or so corms I threw out!

If I discover any tricks to getting more of them out this fall I will let you know, Gail.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 18, 2014 8:00 PM CST
Now you guys have me worried. I got some bulbs this summer but I think it was too hot already & they didn't make it. So I'm getting some more this fall. I'm starting to get a little worried they'll take over. Blinking

I want them to naturalize in my fields, they will be in the hot Fl. sun & it blazes all day long. No water except what Ma Nature provides. What do you guys think?
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Gail
East TN (Zone 6b)
Ghd606
Aug 18, 2014 8:06 PM CST
Flaflwrgrl, if you have a field to naturalize, they'll do it! I don 't know about hot Florida sun, but they thrive here in East TN and I don't water them. Maybe Pirl can give more input on how much hers spread.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
Image
flaflwrgrl
Aug 18, 2014 8:10 PM CST
Thanks Gail. We have 6 ac. & i would like some pretty red blooms out there for the pollinators & I know my hummies will go nuts over them.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 18, 2014 8:23 PM CST
Gail - how about potting them up until you have more definite word on how invasive they may become in your area?

Ann - here they bloom before the hummingbirds arrive so I hope the timing is right for you.

Mine spread from one Home Depot package into the photo above and that doesn't take into account all I saved and then threw out.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
Image
flaflwrgrl
Aug 18, 2014 8:36 PM CST
Arlene, our hummers are here in April.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
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dyzzypyxxy
Aug 18, 2014 8:46 PM CST
Maybe you could try using tomato cages to hold up the leaves? After you thin the corms, replant them in clumps separated by a little space, and put a tomato cage over each clump as soon as they turn up in spring.

They sure are beautiful. They used to grow well in the Pac. NW where I grew up, too.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
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Bonehead
Aug 18, 2014 8:52 PM CST
I have had success with limiting Lucifer by pulling the young stalks and corms in early spring when they first emerge. They come out fairly easily, and I first define the area I will allow it to occupy and pull everything outside that boundary along with thinning the corms within the boundary. As it flowers, anything that starts leaning gets a chop back to about 2'. This sometimes seems drastic, but after cleaning up all the leaners, I still end up with a nice upright display. I think the natural form of this plant would be a fairly large diameter fountain if you have room to allow it. I also plant supporting plants directly in front of Lucifer to aid in keeping the stalks upright. Melissa and Rudbeckia have worked fairly well, and both blend nicely with the orange-red of Lucifer. This photo has some masterwort and veronica in front of Lucifer.



I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Aug 18, 2014 9:00 PM CST
Gorgeous, Deb. You're the one whose advice Gail should follow!
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Aug 18, 2014 9:18 PM CST
That really is a gorgeous display, Deb. Very nice job.

The ones I remember were cascading down a steep bank, and the foliage really did look like water cascading, while the flowers stood out at an angle. It's a lovely plant in its natural form, and you're right, a large fountain would be the way a clump would naturally grow.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill

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