How to Grow Eremurus Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Desert Candle, Foxtail Lily & King’s Spear

Eremurus are hardy perennials that bear 60 cm to 1.8 m long stalks from strappy narrow leaves, atop the stalks sit minute flowers of white, pink or even yellow.

Their height makes them great to be used in borders.

Some of the common names for Eremurus include King's spear, Desert Candle and Foxtail Lily.

Eremurus by wallygrom.

Eremurus Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Desert Candle, Foxtail Lily, King’s Spear.
Life Cycle: Hardy perennial.
Height: 24 to 120 inches (60 to 300 cm).
Native: Central and west Asia.

Growing Region: Zones 5 to 10.
Flowers: Species dependent: Late spring through to early summer.
Flower Details: White, copper, orange, pink, yellow. Tiny. Raceme. Bottlebrush inflorescence with up to 800 flowers.
Foliage: Strap-like. Green. Blue-green.

Sow Outside: Usually grown from divided plants or nursery bought plants as seed grown plants can take six years until first bloom.
Cover seed. Autumn. Seeds should first be sown into flats. Next sink the flat into the ground in an area that offers shade, preferably close to a wall that faces north. Provide a glass/plastic covering. Keep an eye on the flats to ensure that the soil remains moist and to check if seedlings have emerged. Once seedlings have emerged remove the covering. Spacing: Small 12 to 18 inches (30 to 45 cm); Large 36 inches (90 cm).
Sow Inside: Germination time: one month to one year. Temperature: 55 to 65°F (13 to 16°C). End of winter and early spring. Use peat pots. Place in a freezer bag, and then stratify by refrigeration for three weeks.
Transplanting: Dig a hole about 18 inches (45 cm) deep. Add a mix of 1:1:1 Soil:Peat:Rotted cow manure. Transplant in autumn.

Requirements and care: Full sunlight. Good drainage. Regular watering during growing period. Sheltered location. Spring top dressing of manure. Divide every five years to maintain vigour. Propagate Eremurus: by carefully dividing in the last month of summer.

How to grow King's spear and other Eremurus Plants in the Garden

Eremurus can be planted outdoors from roots or seeds. The roots should be buried at a depth of about 10 to 15 cm, whereas seeds should be lightly covered and planted in flats beneath glass; both should be planted in the autumn.

They prefer to grow in a sunny area of the garden and thrive in a well manured peaty soil.

If you plan to start Eremurus plant species such as King's spear and Desert Candle indoors first, then they should be planted into a flat within a black bag, then placed in the fridge for three weeks.

Seeds should then be grown at a temperature of 12 to 15 Celsius; they normally take from one to twelve months to germinate.

The flats should then be placed outdoors north facing, once seedlings emerge remove the glass and transplant to their final location in the Autumn.

Propagate further plants through division.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Eremurus plants. Updated September 2020.