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Eucomis bicolor (pineapple lily)

Pineapple lily is a summer-flowering, bulbous perennial with an impressive, long-lasting display of star-shaped flowers.
Eucomis bicolor (pineapple lily) inflorescence

Eucomis bicolor inflorescence (Photo: Mike Peel, licensed under CC BY 2.5)

Species information

Scientific name: 

Eucomis bicolor Baker

Common name: 

pineapple lily, pineapple flower (English); bontpynappelblom, bospynappellelie (Afrikaans); imbola, umbola (Zulu); kxampumpu-ya-thaba (Sotho)

Conservation status: 

Near Threatened in South Africa according to IUCN Red List criteria.

Habitat: 

Forest and grassland; often on mountain slopes, cliffs and along watercourses.

Key Uses: 

Ornamental, traditional medicine.

Known hazards: 

None known, although the bulbs of other species, such as Eucomis autumnalis, are toxic if ingested.

Taxonomy

Subclass: 
Superorder: 
Lilianae
Order: 
Asparagales
Family: 
Asparagaceae
Genus: Eucomis

About this species

Eucomis bicolor was described in 1878 by English botanist John Gilbert Baker. The most commonly cultivated of ten known species of Eucomis, pineapple lily is often used to give a tropical appearance to temperate gardens. Flowers are long-lasting, making pineapple lily an excellent late-summer to autumn interest plant.

The generic name Eucomis derives from the Greek eukomos meaning ‘lovely-haired’ and refers to the crown of leafy bracts at the top of the flowering stem.

Genus: 
Eucomis

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