How to Grow Asphodeline Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Jacob's rod (Flower of the dead, King's spear)

Asphodeline are hardy perennials.

Some of the common names for members of the genus include Asphodel; Jacob's rod and King's spear.

They normally flower in the summer months.

Description of Asphodeline

Asphodeline are fairly tall plants typically 30 cm to one metre in size (one to just over three feet).

At the top of these tall stems can be found clustered yellow flowers that are star like in colour. Jacob's rod flowers are often very fragrant in nature.

Asphodeline by Belgianchocolate.

Asphodeline lutea
Asphodeline lutea (Jacob's rod) by Ishaip.

Asphodeline Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Asphodel, Jacob's Rod, King's Spear
Family: Asphodelaceae.
Life Cycle: Hardy Perennial
Height: 48 to 60 inches (120 to 150 cm)
Native: Mediterranean

Growing Region: Zones 6 to 8
Flowers: Late Spring to Early Summer
Flower Details:Yellow, Spikes, Star shaped, fragrant
Foliage: Grass like, Blue-green

Sow Outdoors: Sow seeds and lightly cover in the spring. Plant roots at a depth of 3 to 4 inches (7 to 10cm) in spring or autumn. Spacing: Small species 6 to 10 inches (15 to 20cm); Large species 15 to 18 inches (38 to 45 cm). Grow in mass.
Sow Indoors: Late winter to early spring. Germination time: 1 month. Temperature 70 to 75°F (21 to 24 °C), Transplant outdoors following the last frost or at the start of autumn.

Requirements: Full Sunlight for best results, can also grow in partial shade. Good drainage. Soil pH 6 to 8. Ordinary soil. Watering in dry periods. Fertilize in spring Mulch in cold climates. Divide in early autumn.

How to Grow Jacob's rod and other Asphodeline

If you plan to grow Jacob's rod and related species from seed outdoors then they should be planted out from spring to early summer. Simply cover the seeds once sown.

If you are planting Asphodeline root stocks then you should plant these at a depth of 8 to 10 cm.

If you plant to plant Asphodeline seeds indoors then this should ideally be done in the early spring. Germination will take in the region of a month and should be performed at temperature of around 20 degrees Celsius.

The seedlings can then be transplanted outdoors after the last frost of spring (or in autumn).

Seedlings of Asphodeline should be planted out at a distance of about 20 cm apart for smaller species and 35 to 45 cm for larger species.

They should ideally be planted in a sunny area of the garden for best flowering, but can also be grown in partially shaded areas of the garden. They are best grown in a well drained soil of pH 6 to 8.

Caring for Asphodeline Species

Asphodeline are pretty easy to look after, they should be fertilized in the spring, and kept watered during dry periods.

Flowering stems should be removed after the last spring frost to encourage more flowering heads.

Common Questions

How many members does the Asphodeline genus have?

The Asphodeline genus consists of about 16-18 species of flowering plants.

Do members of Asphodeline make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Asphodeline, also known as Jacob's rod, are perennials that produce attractive spikes of yellow flowers, making them a great choice for a sunny border.

Which Asphodeline species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

Asphodeline lutea, or King's Spear, is a popular choice for its tall, striking flower spikes and low-maintenance nature.

Are members of the Asphodeline plant genus fragrant?

Asphodeline plants are not typically known for their fragrance, but for their visual appeal.

What is the perfect location to grow Asphodeline?

Asphodeline thrives in well-drained soil in a sunny location. It is drought-tolerant once established and prefers alkaline to neutral pH soils.

Is Asphodeline invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Currently, Asphodeline species are not considered invasive in the USA.

How do I remove Asphodeline plants from my garden?

To remove Asphodeline plants, dig up the root systems completely and dispose of them responsibly.


The Asphodeline genus, part of the Xanthorrhoeaceae family, includes about 18 species of perennials known as Jacob's rod. These plants, native to the Mediterranean and Middle East, are characterized by their tall spikes of yellow or white star-shaped flowers and tufts of grass-like leaves.

Asphodeline plants thrive in full sun and well-drained soil. They are drought-tolerant once established and can handle poor soils. Their striking flower spikes make them an excellent choice for adding vertical interest to a border or rock garden. After flowering, they produce interesting seed pods, adding additional garden interest.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on Asphodeline. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Phormium and Bulbinella plants.