Common Names: Agapanthus, Lily of the Nile, African Lily

Botanical names: Agapanthus (ag-a-PAN-thus)

Availability: March through August

Vase life: 6 to 12 days with individual florets blooming continuously over several days

Storage temperatures: 34 to 36 degrees Fahrenheit

Ethylene Sensitive: Yes

Description: Large globe-shaped clusters of funnel-shaped flowers at the end of a tall stem.

Color: Blue, and shades of blue are the most common colors. White flowered cultivars are available.

Botanical facts: Agapanthus is Greek for "love flower." The genus name was derived from the Greek words “agape” (“love”) and “anthos” (“flower”), translating as the “flower of love” or “lovely flower”.

Design notes: The long stem of the Agapanthus adds a strong line element with a bold but airy quality to a floral design. Agapanthus stems range in height from just 20 cm (8 inches) up to 1,8 m (6 ft) for larger varieties. It mixes well with many flowers in many different design styles.

Purchasing hints: Purchase Agapanthus just prior to the first flowers beginning to open. Look for a tight cluster, just showing color or with a few blooms open.

Conditioning: Remove two to three inches of the stem with a sharp knife. Hydrate in a solution of water and commercial floral preservative before storage or usage.

Additional notes: Premature flower fall is caused primarily by ethylene, especially for immature flower buds. The white cultivars are more prone to premature flower fall than are the blue cultivars. Agapanthus is a symbol of love. It can also symbolize fertility, purity and beauty.