Crocosmia Plant Care

Table of Contents

Every garden gets its fair share of summer doldrums. The best way to rid of it is by panting summer-blooming bulb flowering plants. You can plant tuberous begonias and gladioli in spring.

These are warm-weather bloomers that generally do not survive winter months. But there is one exception, and that is to plant Crocosmia corms. Yes, we know it has a tropical origin, but it is a vigorous perennial.

It is hardy down to hardiness zones five to remain in your garden year-round. One thing is for sure the lily-like blooms will light up the garden beds to borders in summer. It will also attract hummingbirds to pollinators.

Even when not in bloom, the fountain-shaped spiky foliage contrasts container gardening and landscapes.

More About Crocosmia Plant

flowering Crocosmia plant

The Crocosmia genus belongs to the Iridaceae, known as the Iris family. When most plants enter dormancy, like tulips, the Coppertips grow from corms throughout the growing season until the last frost in fall.

You see red, orange, and yellow flower production on the long arching stems. These blooms open one at a time, starting from the bottom of the stem and working their way up. The foliage looks attractive all season long.

The common name for these plants is Coppertips or Montbretia, which originates from South Africa. You can grow the bulb flower as a focal point in your garden along beds and borders. Or you can plant them as a mass to make an impact.

Alternatively, you can place them in container arrangements and works well in a pollinator garden. When your plant flowers bloom, you can use them in flower arrangements, adding foliar interest to any place.

Crocosmia Plant Care

flowering crocosmia plant

Crocosmia flowers do not need special attention after planting the corms. The best time to plant your Crocosmia corms is in spring after the frost has passed. You can plant them three inches deep and eight inches apart to help them survive winter.

Also, to prevent the foliage from flower stalks lying down, it helps grow through plant supports.

Still, a note of warning is that some cultivars are invasive:

  • Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora (Montbretia)

  • C. masoniorum (Crocosmia ‘Marcotijn’)

  • Some of the forms of C. pottsii can spread readily.


potting soil

One thing you need not do with your Crocosmia is to pamper it when providing them with soil. The important thing is to provide well-drained soil. So, if you a heavy clay soil, you can amend it with peat moss and sand to give it a loose consistency.

An alternative is to grow Crocosmia in containers with drainage holes or raised flower beds. You can also add humus-rich soil to organic mulch for added growth.

Light Needs

flowering crocosmia plant under full sun

Crocosmia corms thrive in full sun to produce those gorgeous blooms. You can grow them in partial shade, but they will not flower much. In hot climates, some afternoon shade is welcome.

If you plant Crocosmias in light shade and find them reaching toward the sun, we recommend digging up the corms once the foliage starts to fade and placing them in a sunny spot.

Watering Your Crocosmia

One thing your crocosmia plants need is water but not soggy soil. You can water them when you feel the top inch of the soil is dry. The rule is to keep the soil moist but not completely dry.


Your outdoor plants will grow in lean-to-rocky soil and do not need additional feeding. The reason is that too many nutrients result in the foliage overgrowing and does not result in blooms.

Humidity and Temperature

Crocosmia plant

While Crocosmia can thrive in the heat with humidity, it prefers drier climates. You may live in places like the Pacific Northwest; the plants can take over flowerbeds.


When the flower production is over and the blooms are spent, please do not remove it until it naturally dies back in late summer after the growing season. The reason is that the green sword-shaped foliage still produces photosynthesis diverting the energy towards the corms to produce blooms the following year.

Still, you can remove the dead flower heads throughout the flowering season.

You can cut them back where the leaves and stems meet.

Propagating Crocosmia

The Crocosmia produces small offsets that form corms and is done when you divide congested clumps to yield more flowers. Alternatively, you can dig up the corms in spring before new growth starts and separate the corms using your hand. Then, you can replant them again.

Another way to propagate Crocosmia is through seeds by collecting them in the fall. You can save the seed capsules until spring. Then you can remove them from the capsules and soak them in water. You can then plant the seed in the ground using sandy loam soil.

When you live in your typical hardiness zones, you can leave your plant in the ground to overwinter. You can add some organic mulch as added protection. Still, in colder regions, we recommend digging up the corms and keeping them inside a cool, dry storage place.

How to Get Crocosmia to Bloom

Here the important thing to remember with new plants indoors is that they might not bloom in the first year. But if your Crocosmia has no flower production in the second season, it can result from different things.

The first can be too much fertilizer, leading to overgrowth and few blooms. Secondly, your plant might stand a low light and need full sun to produce those beautiful blooms. While you have your plant in well-drained soil, you still need to keep the soil moist during droughts.

Crocosmia Varieties

You can find different varieties to add to your garden in the Crocosmia genus. Here are our favorites:

Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora

Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora

Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora provides most gardens with a dramatic reddish-orange flower display that is eye-catching. The flowers form along the branches at the top of the stem in two rows.

Crocosmia Lucifer

Crocosmia Lucifer

The Lucifer are spring bloomers with blood-red flowers and is a popular variety.

Crocosmia Bressinghamm Beacon

Crocosmia Bressinghamm Beacon

It is a bi-color Crocosmia with yellow flowers that also provide a great display in your garden

Crocosmia Diseases and Pests

Planting Crocosmia is mostly disease free, but you can have problems when not providing them with enough drained soil. Other concerns are spider mites when growing in dry conditions during summer.

The best way to treat these critters is to bring in predators or use neem oil to prevent spider mite infestations. To prevent rotting of the root when growing Crocosmia, it helps to water when the soil feels dry.

Frequently Asked Questions

The best solution when your Crocosmia is planted and overgrown is to thin them out. You can select your plant, break fair-sized clumps apart, and remove damaged corms.

It helps to deadhead the flowers as it helps encourage new blooms and prune the leaves at the end of the growing season to help manage the plants’ size.

When your plant completes the blooming cycle, it helps to leave the foliage, allowing it to put back energy into the corms to bloom again. Once the foliage withers and dies, you can cut back your plant to ground level.

The Crocosmia plants you can find are available at most garden centers, but the good news is that you will find a great selection of these plants here with us at Plantly.

Whether you want to buy, sell or simply reach out to other plant enthusiasts, Plantly is the right place to be!

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