Flower Types

All About Nerine Flower

nerine flower

Nerine flower, also known as the Guernsey lily or spider lily, belongs to the Amaryllidaceae family. These bulbous perennials are native to South Africa and thrive in rocky and arid habitats. Let’s explore their history, types, colors, symbolism, and more.

History and Origin

The enchanting Nerine flower, also known as the Guernsey or Jersey Lily, boasts a storied past. Hailing from the southern regions of Africa, the name ‘Nerine’ is derived from the Nereids, the sea nymphs of Greek lore. Celebrated for its resilience, the Nerine waits until the autumnal embrace to reveal its vibrant petals.

  • Nerines have been growing wild on Guernsey for 350 years, earning them the nickname “Guernsey lily.”
  • Reverend William Herbert established the genus Nerine in 1820.


  • Bulbous geophytes with simple, green leaves.
  • Flower stalks emerge separately from the leaves.
  • Umbels of lily-like flowers in various colors.
  • Late flowering season: September to November.

Types of Nerine Flowers

nerine flowers
  1. Nerine bowdenii:
    • Pink flowers.
    • Suitable as a pot plant that can spend summers in the garden.
    • Tolerates temperatures down to -2°C.
  2. Nerine ‘Alba’:
    • Bears white flowers.
  3. Nerine ‘Bernice’:
    • Bicolored flowers in white and pink.
  4. Nerine ‘Hera’:
    • Bright pink flowers.

Flower Colors

  • Nerines come in shades from white through pink to crimson.
  • Some varieties even have white flowers.

Nerine Flower Meaning and Symbolism

Nerine flowers are imbued with rich symbolism, embodying connection, joy, security, affection, and freedom. They are often associated with spiritual purity and the concept of rebirth, making them a poignant choice for reflective spaces and practices.

  • Connection: Nerines symbolize connections and relationships.
  • Joy: Their vibrant colors bring joy.
  • Security: The hardiness of Nerine bowdenii represents stability.
  • Affection: The delicate petals evoke feelings of tenderness.
  • Freedom: Nerines bloom when other flowers fade, symbolizing resilience. They are often associated with spiritual purity and the concept of rebirth, making them a poignant choice for reflective spaces and practices.

Nerine Flower Proper Occasions

nerine flower meaning
  • Nerines are perfect for autumn displays, adding color as winter approaches.
  • Use them in bouquets, arrangements, or potted plants.

Fun Facts

  • Nerines have been widely cultivated and hybridized.
  • The hybrid cultivar ‘Zeal Giant’ has received the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.
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