Crocosmia Not Flowering? Here’s What To Do
Crocosmia is a beautiful and rather exotic-looking flower – but if your crocosmia is not flowering, you may be tempted to give up. This South African plant is easily recognized by its sword-shaped leaves and bright flashes of scarlet, orange, red, and yellow flowers. These plants are relatively easy to grow if done properly but require due attention.
If your crocosmia is not flowering, the most common causes are over fertilisation, lack of sun, poor watering, and transplant shock.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about crocosmia and how to grow it to a healthy, beautifully flowering plant.
Top 4 Reasons Your Crocosmia is Not Flowering
Generally, when growing crocosmia it’s best to plan for a few things. First and foremost, we’re going to be talking about transplant shock. Let’s get into it, shall we?
In short, transplant shock is what happens when you move a plant to a new environment that it’s not prepared for. While some plants can be easily replanted and moved about as need, crocosmia is not one of those. When you’re planting a crocosmia plant, it’s best to plan for it to not flower much (if at all) during its first blooming season in your garden. This is a common sight and shouldn’t make you worry too much.
If you’re planning on moving a crocosmia plant, do the following to reduce the chance of your plant experiencing transplant shock:
- Thoroughly water your crocosmia plant before anything else. Allowing it to soak in moisture while you prepare your new planting pot or stretch of garden will ensure it’s properly hydrated before moving. Try to plant during its dormant season (late autumn through early spring).
- Add compost or well-rotted manure into your 30 cm hole and water the new site as well. Planting crocosmia in dry earth will make transplant shock much, much more likely.
- Using a shovel, remove the plant from its home with all of the dirt clumped on the roots. Separate each baby cormel, as they will all form new plants. You can use a hose to more easily separate them.
- Refill the new site, allowing only ~7 cm of the hole to remain. Place the largest cormels and the original “mother” cormel in the soil, roughly 7 cm apart each, placing the original slightly deeper. Fill the site with soil and lightly tamp it down.
- Spread a thin layer of compost or mulch over the top and water the planting site. Now just water as usual and wait!
If you provided too much fertiliser or mulch, you may notice that your crocosmia plant has an abundance of shrubbery and few (if any) flowers. This is a direct result of overfeeding your plant! Crocosmia is native to South Africa and its relatively rocky and nutrient-lacking soil, meaning it’s able to grow in most places. This also means that it doesn’t require a lot of food to survive.
If you overapplied fertiliser, it may be too late for the plant in question to flower this year. However, there are a few good things to know that will allow it to flower beautifully next year.
- You can amend the issue with compost, leaf mould, or manure worked into the soil around the plant.
- Reduce your use of fertiliser in the future to prevent this happening again.
- If you can’t amend the soil, apply mulch in the spring to help it bloom in summer.
- Even if you over-fertilised your plant, it’s likely still very healthy. You’ll just get few (if any) flowers this season and an abundance of shrubbery.
Just like people, plants need the sun to thrive. Depending on your climate, the area in which you planted your crocosmia may affect how much it’s flowering.
Assuming you’re not in an overly hot climate, planting your crocosmia in a spot that will grant it long hours of full sunlight will make it flower perfectly. However, if you’re in an extremely hot climate that’s prone to extended periods of high temperatures, it may be best to plant if partially in shade. Alternatively, if you feel that you’ve planted in an area that’s too shaded, look above to see how to transplant your crocosmia.
If you live in a hot area, it’s best to add compost, manure, or leaf mould to your soil to improve its moisture capacity. Additionally, watering during extreme heat flashes will ensure your plant has everything it needs to thrive.
Water is vital to just about every plant’s well being. Crocosmia is no different, but it’s important to know exactly how much you need to water it to make things work. And don’t forget – your climate dictates how much water you need more than I, some stranger on the internet, ever should. So if you feel that there’s not enough water going into your plant, consider upping your weekly watering.
Generally (in ideal conditions) crocosmia needs to be watered generously once a week. It needs well-draining, moist soil at all times to flower well. If you’re in a hot climate that gets extreme temperatures, a combination of mulch and slightly more water will help. This is because mulch helps to retain moisture without drying out too quickly.
Crocosmia is a beautiful plant when it flowers, presenting a wide array of incredible colours. But if it’s not provided with the proper home, it will struggle to flower. Ensuring that it’s getting enough sunlight and water will keep it happy – though that’s not all.
Over-fertilisation is a common mistake many people make when first growing crocosmia. This results in a healthy and flower-bare plant that’s heavy on foliage. And perhaps the most important question to ask yourself is when you planted your crocosmia. If this will be its first year, don’t expect your crocosmia to flower right away. It will likely present with a lot of leaves and few flowers. This will improve the next year with proper care.
Now go get gardening!