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A picture of a African Lily

African Lily

Agapanthus spp.

Also known as

Lily-of-the-Nile, Love flower

Photo by AfricanDragon46 (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Moderate care
Light watering


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








2 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has no fragrance

More images of African Lily

A photo of African Lily
A photo of African Lily
A photo of African Lily
A photo of African Lily
A photo of African Lily

African Lily Overview

Agapanthus is a family of perennial, summer-blooming plants, also known as African Lilies. They typically grow in bushy mounds and have vertical stems bearing umbels of tubular, trumpet or bell-shaped flowers. They range in colour from deep blue to purple, pink or white. Their leaves are long, arching and strap-shaped. Some of the 10 species of African Lilies (also known as the African Blue Lily) are evergreen and are the ones most likely to be seen in coastal areas. These are usually less hardy than their deciduous relatives. Native to Southern Africa, Agapanthus plants are some of its best-known garden plants. Any of its species make a striking floral display in summer, and they are popular as cut flowers. The seedheads - whether left on the plant or dried indoors - are often seen in dried flower arrangements. The African Lily is best grown in full sun and well-draining soil, in borders or containers. Its large clumps of bright or deep green foliage and swaying, colourful 'drumstick' flowers make a dramatic addition to just about any garden. Cold, wet winters are the main enemy of Agapanthus, so mulching in late autumn is a good idea.

Common problems with African Lily

How to harvest African Lily

Seeds to be harvested in autumn when the seed pods have dried out. Flower stalks may be cut for flower arrangements during summer months.

How to propagate African Lily


Divide the tuberous rhizomes in winter when the plant is dormant.


Divide clusters every four years in winter when the plant is dormant.


Seeds must be sown fresh in the autumn, or if you are in an area where you receive below freezing temperatures, keep the seeds cool in the fridge and sow in the spring.

Special features of African Lily

Attractive flowers

Attractive clusters of trumpet-shaped flowers

Attracts useful insects

Attracts insects like bees and butterflies.

Attracts birds

Drought resistant

This plant can withstand drought periods, as it fleshy rhizomes store water reserves.

Pot plant

Grows well outdoors in large pots.

Other uses of African Lily

Ornamental, containers, borders.

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