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Tritonia crocata is a Corm up to 0.50 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food.
Dry clay flats and slopes in the southern Cape[
Requires a sunny position, preferring a well-drained neutral to slightly acid soil with a pH in the range 6.5 to 7[
]. Requires moisture in the winter and spring followed by a dry period in the summer and early autumn[
A difficult plant to grow outdoors in Britain, it comes into growth in the winter and flowers in the spring[
]. The growing plant is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c[
Closely related to T. squallida, apparently differing only in the colour of the flowers[
The flowers are used as an adulterant of saffron in flavouring food and colouring it yellow[
Seed - sow early spring in a greenhouse at 15°c[
]. It usually germinates freely[
]. Seed can also be sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a warm greenhouse[
]. Sow the seed thinly so that the seedlings can be left undisturbed in the pot for their first two years of growth. Give them an occasional liquid feed in the growing season to ensure they do not become nutrient deficient. When the plants become dormant in the summer, pot up the small bulbs placing 2 - 3 bulbs in each pot. Grow them on for another one or two years in the greenhouse before planting them out when they are dormant in late summer.
Division. Dig up the corms in early autumn, dry them in well ventilated conditions at about 20°c and then store them in a cool but frost-free place over the winter, planting them out about 10cm deep in mid spring[
]. Corms should be planted out in the autumn[
Cormlets harvested when digging up the corms in the autumn can be stored in a similar manner to the corms[
]. Larger cormlets can be planted out in spring, smaller ones may be best grown on for a year in the greenhouse.