The Humble Reinga Lily

Reinga Lily Seed Pods

For those semi shaded areas in your garden where nothing wants to grow the humble renga lily is well worth consideration. Other than having to deal to the slugs that take delight in shredding it’s leaves the renga lily requires almost zero maintenance.

Some years ago I purchased some 20 or so plants from a local garden centre to disguise an ugly bank and to beautify beneath some trees. I really needed hundreds of them but that was going to be too costly.

Instead every winter since buying those original plants I’ve been breaking up the larger established ones and replanting them  further along the bank. It’s been a slow process which to date has only produced ordinary results.

This year I decided that there had to be an easier way.

Simple, grow your own?

Reinga Lily In Seed Raising Mix

Above: Sprouting at about 4 weeks, need to look closely. I had these inside where they were exposed to autumn and winter sun. To keep the seed raising mix nice and moist I used a 650 ml simple green sprayer bottle. It’s important to do this regularly if you want the seeds to germinate.

Reinga Lily Seedlings In Container

The seedlings in dunny rolls at approx 16 weeks.

Reinga Lily & Container Of Snail Pellets

Slugs love to eat reinga lilies so it was necessary to protect them with some slug and snail pellets. Without these the tender young plants would not have lasted a night.

New Planted Reinga Lily Seedlings

As much as I like birds I didn’t want thrushes and blackbirds scratching  out my new plantings so I used some timber off cuts from the work shop to act as markers and to protect them whilst they establish. (mature plants shown in this last photograph)

Last autumn I harvested hundreds of reinga lily seeds so I will continue with my mass plantings until those ugly banks paint a much prettier picture.

That I hopefully will post another day.

Reinga lily ( Arthropodium cirratum )

Mass of small white flowers on long stems over summer.
Suits mass planting on banks, shaded areas around trees, borders, rock gardens and pots.
Prefers semi shaded drier areas and is tolerant of light frosts.
Occurs naturally in coastal areas throughout much of the North Island and the northern parts of the South Island.

Favourite Quotes:
In the hopes of reaching the moon men fail to see the flowers that blossom at their feet. Albert Schweitzer

2 Responses

  1. Cathy Payne
    Cathy Payne |

    Great article on saving seed! Thanks for the step by step photos. Seed saving is becoming a lost art. I’m ready to harvest some dill seeds for next year. I’ve had great luck with that and okra, too.

  2. Terrina
    Terrina |

    “Common” is an apt term to describe the reinga lily I think. Appearing very ordinary when not in flower and being seen, it seems, on every concreted street side when the council needs to fill some space with a bit of green, (and decide to plant something a bit better than ivy or rather ugly looking shrubs). However, I have fallen in love with that lily and its clusters of cute, little white flowers.

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