Later: I got out in the afternoon and went to Dr. K.'s office to pick something up, so that was productive.
I checked the crinum I got in April of 2016 and found a couple of weeks ago, and it had sprouted roots. I was amazed. I pulled the dead heliotrope out of the pot that was in and put the crinum bulb in that, with the soil just covering the roots. I cut back the dead leaves from when it had sprouted in 2016, and ended up cutting into the live top of the "neck" of the bulb. Hopefully it will still try to sprout leaves.