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Scadoxus multiflorus (Blood Lily)


Scientific Name

Scadoxus multiflorus (Martyn) Raf.

Common Names

Blood Lily, Blood Flower, African Blood Lily, Fireball, Fireball Lily, Football Lily, Ball Lily, Low Lily, Monsoon Lily, Katherine-wheel, Oxtongue Lily, Poison Root, Pincushion Flower, Powderpuff Lily


Amaryllis multiflora, Haemanthus multiflorus, Haemanthus tenuiflorus, Nerissa multiflorus

Scientific Classification

Family: Amaryllidaceae
Subfamily: Amaryllidoideae
Genus: Scadoxus


Scadoxus multiflorus is a popular geophyte that grows from a rhizomatous bulb. The spectacular flower head is a huge, spherical umbel consisting of up to 100 flowers, held clear of the foliage at the end of a solitary stem. Each plant will produce 6 to 7 leaves and one flower head per season. The leaves are semi-succulent, bright green, and up to 15 inches (37.5 cm) long. The leaves and flowers may appear together, or the leaves may be produced later.

Scadoxus multiflorus (Blood Lily)

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USDA hardiness zones 9a to 11b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 45 °F (+7.2 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Blood Lily is very easy to maintain and doesn't require much attention. Just make sure not to put it in extremely hot temperatures or direct contact to the summer sun, and your Blood Lily should be fine. An environment that provides partial shade will be perfect.

This plant loves the summer temperature, so put it out in the upper 60 °F (16 °C) or higher if possible. Understandably, these plants cannot tolerate and survive frost in winter-like conditions.

Put your Blood Lily in a pot with a good mixture of sand and rich potting soil. Since they are very hardy, regular repotting isn't necessary unless in emergencies.

It blooms in the late summer or fall and seemingly lies dormant during the other times of the year. Inspect the leaves now and then and remove withered ones to keep them looking lovely.


Scadoxus multiflorus is native to most of sub-Saharan Africa, from Senegal to Somalia to South Africa.


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