Red Hot Poker - Kniphofia (Kniphofia uvaria) Torch Lily African Flame Flower
Height 100 cm or 40 in tall
Red Hot Poker, also known as Tritoma, Torch Lily, African Flame Flower, and Poker Plant, is a genus of perennial flowering plants in the family Asphodelaceae, first described as a genus in 1794! This species is a rhizomatous perennial and is native to South Africa.
Pokers are highly ornamental plants and are excellent for impact! They have grass like foliage with red and yellow torch-like spikes for flower heads that consist of a cluster of dense downward drooping tubes of yellow, orange and green.
A repeat-bloomer, Pokers benefit from deadheading to encourage prolific flowering. Blooms lowest down on the flower stalk dry up and fade first, turning a pale brown. This fading then progresses up the rest of the stalk until reaching the top bloom which is the last to lose its color. Seeds are easily harvested.
Mulch your plants for winter protection and wait until spring to prune back the foliage. The leaves will furnish a bit of extra protection against the cold. You can also bind the leaves together to create a protective cover for the plant's crown. In spring, prior to the growing season, trim the foliage base to a few inches above the ground to give the plant a fresh start for the growth ahead.
Red hot pokers do not tolerate division well - these plants spread via rhizomes, eventually forming clumps that can become overcrowded. To create more plants, divide them in spring to minimize overcrowding - it's best to remove offsets from the perimeter of the clumps rather than dividing clumps down the middle. Divide using a sharp spade to slice through the plant's root system. Transplants should have a large mass of roots and many above ground stems. Water in and keep moist until roots are established.
- Prefers sun to part shade
- Direct seed in early spring or late fall; spacing 50 to 60 cm or 19 in apart. Cover seeds lightly.
- OR start seeds indoors 6-8 weeks prior to last frost date. Sow 3 seeds in each container and lightly dust with soil. Seeds needs a chilling period. Keep the containers where temperatures are 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit (21-23 C.)
- Keep evenly moist.
- Germinates in 21 to 28 days
- Transplant seedlings when they are strong enough to handle and all risk of frost has passed.
- Soil should be rich, moist and well draining.
- Blooms summer through fall
- Seed Count: 30