Asphodeline lutea

Asphodeline lutea Family: Asphodelaceae
(as-foh-DELL-in-ee LOO-tee-ah)

Common name: king’s spear; Jacob’s rod; yellow asphodel;
flower of the dead

Zone: 7

Height: 3-4 ft (90-120 cm)
Spread: 1-2 ft (30-60 cm)
Aspect: full sun; partial shade
Soil: fertile; well-draining
Water: moderate

Description: An herbaceous perennial with a clump-forming, slightly spreading habit. Narrow, grass-like, blue-grey-green leaves. Dense racemes of dark yellow, fragrant, star-shaped flowers with large bracts appear in late spring through summer. Propagate by seed; division in spring or autumn.


Special Notes: Native to southeastern Europe and Turkey. Once used long ago as a medicinal plant. Introduced into England in 1648. Attracts bees and other pollinating insects. Attractive seedheads. Self-sows. Slugs and snails may be a problem for newly emerging shoots in early spring.


Posted on December 17, 2012; updated on January 31, 2013