Scientific name: Crocosmia (genus)

Fact Box:

  • Order: Asparagales
  • Family: Iridaceae
  • Genus: Crocosmia


Native to southern Africa and Madagascar, coppertips, falling stars, and montbretia are all common names of the genus Crocosmia. Usually blooming in warm colors — red, orange, and yellow — the flamboyant flowers are part of Iridaceae, or iris, family, which is known for its ornamental and colorful plants.

The genus name Crocosmia originates from krokos and osme, the Greek words for “saffron” and “smell.” Apparently, the dried flowers of this genus smell like saffron when they are submerged in hot water.


Crocosmia’s hybrids and varieties abound in the world. Fiery Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ (Crocosmia x Curtonus) tops the list of Crocosmia varieties grown in the U.S.

With swordlike foliage, crimson coppertips bloom into late summer.