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Eremurus

Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
er-eh-MEUR-us
Description

Derived from the words 'ekemos' which translates to solitary and 'oura', meaning tall, describes this plant to a tea.  Solitary spikes from which the flowers appear can reach heights of up to 8 feet tall.  Each spike can contain hundreds of tiny, fragrant flowers, in a variety of colors that bloom from the bottom up.  The overall appearance of the flowered spike resembles a bottle brush, a fox's tail or a candlestick.    

Often referred to as a bulb, Foxtail lily is actually a tuberous root that blooms during the late spring into early summer.  These fleshy, star-shaped roots are where the plants food is stored. 

The long spikes of numerous small flowers are great for cutting.  It is very sensitive to late spring frosts, so mulch the leaves as soon as they emerge.

The leaves will wither once the flowers begin to bloom, so consider planting these perennials in a bed of ground covers that will enhance the appearance of the leafless stalk.  

In mild climate locations, they can be planted in the early part of the fall.  Spring planting should be done in cooler climates. Ensure that protection from strong winds is provided.  Plant the crowns 6 in. (15 cm) deep, 1 bulb per sq. ft., 12 in. apart.  Keep the soil uniformly moist and protect the plant from the wind.  This plant is not drought tolerant, so keep it planted in an area with rich, well-drained soil that retains moisture throughout the year.  Plants should be divided every 3-4 years in the fall.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious issues.  Slugs are an occasional problem.  Ensure that proper drainage is provided to prevent root rot.  Staking may be necessary during periods of high winds.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Foxtrot'
    Pink flowers
  • 'Oase'
    Pale peach flowers with gold stamens.
  • 'Romance'
    Salmon/pink flowers with yellow/orange stamens.
'Foxtrot', 'Oase', 'Romance'
Tags:
#hummingbirds#deciduous#full sun tolerant#drought tolerant#perennials#white flowers#pink flowers#tuberous#rabbit resistant#disease resistant#well-drained soil#rich soils#summer flowers#deer resistant#summer bulbs#long lifespan#cutting garden#poor soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#meadows#clay soils intolerant#butterflies#butterfly#insect resistant#butterfly garden
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Foxtrot'
    Pink flowers
  • 'Oase'
    Pale peach flowers with gold stamens.
  • 'Romance'
    Salmon/pink flowers with yellow/orange stamens.
'Foxtrot', 'Oase', 'Romance'
Tags:
#hummingbirds#deciduous#full sun tolerant#drought tolerant#perennials#white flowers#pink flowers#tuberous#rabbit resistant#disease resistant#well-drained soil#rich soils#summer flowers#deer resistant#summer bulbs#long lifespan#cutting garden#poor soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#meadows#clay soils intolerant#butterflies#butterfly#insect resistant#butterfly garden
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Eremurus
    Family:
    Asphodelaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Beautiful addition to a bed or border. Plant in groups for the best effect.
    Life Cycle:
    Bulb
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Asia
    Wildlife Value:
    Both hummingbirds and butterflies are attracted to the flowers.
    Play Value:
    Attractive Flowers
    Attracts Pollinators
    Easy to Grow
    Fragrance
    Bulb Storage:
    Store tuberous roots in slightly moist vermiculite or peat at 41-45 degrees F (5-7 degrees C). Prevent from drying out
    Dimensions:
    Height: 3 ft. 0 in. - 8 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Bulb
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Perennial
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Columnar
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8b, 8a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Pink
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Spike
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Good Cut
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    6 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Hundreds of small flowers on long spikes make this a good cut flower.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    The leaves emerge in early spring and are frost sensitive. Mulching or providing other means of protecting the leaves during this time is recommended. The foliage will wither back during the time that the plant is flowering.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Form:
    Straight
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Patio
    Vertical Spaces
    Walkways
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Cutting Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Barrier
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Diseases
    Drought
    Insect Pests
    Poor Soil
    Rabbits