Family: Amaryllidaceae
Common name: Guernsey lily

Origin: South Africa

Flower color: white, orange, pink (main color), red

Flowering period: September – October

Average plant height: 14 – 36 inches

Planting depth to base of bulbs: neck just above the soil

Spacing between bulbs: 8 inches

Type of bulb: true bulb

Light requirements: full sun and sheltered location (morning sun)

Landscape uses: border and container, excellent cut flower.


According to a popular anecdote, Nerine got its common name, Guernsey lily, when a specimen washed up on the shores of Guernsey, an island in the English Channel, thus introducing the South African native to Europe.

Nerine blooms as a cluster of flowers on a leafless stem. Each flower is trumpet-shaped with recurved petals. The difference between Nerine bowdenii and Nerine sarniensis is that Nerine bowdenii flowers at the end of the growing period ( Sept – Oct) when the foliage has almost withered while Nerine sarniensis produces flowers in September that are immediately followed foliage development.

Principal varieties

  • Nerine bowdenii comprises 90% of bulbs available: pink. 
  • Nerine undulata is a crispa (fringed) type: pink. 
  • Nerine sarniensis corusca ‘Major’ is crimson to orange-red. 
  • Nerine flexuosa ‘Alba’ is white.