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Top 5 Indigenous Bulbs for Winter

Cyrtanthus mackenii

(Ifafa Lilly)

This deciduous groundcover is frost resistant, water wise and fast growing. It is very versatile as it grows in the sun or semi-shade. There are various colour forms pink or yellow or orange flowers that occur in in winter. It is traditionally used as a protective charm. It is lovely in small gardens so plant it in a spot where you will enjoy the flowers in winter.

Haemanthus albiflos

(Dappled Snowbrush)

This deciduous groundcover thrives in shade or semi-shade. It has beautiful white flowers in autumn which look like paint brushes that have been dipped in snow. It attracts butterflies and is medicinally used for coughs. It looks beautiful when mass planted under trees or in pots in a patio.

Kniphofia praecox

(Red-Hot Poker)

This is a must for a stunning winter garden. It is an evergreen groundcover which is frost resistant and fast growing. Plant a clump of them in the sun, in a moist area or a wetland. The orange-yellow flowers make a stunning display in winter and attract birds and butterflies. It is suitable for small gardens and the flowers are long lasting in the vase.

Tulbaghia simmleri (Tulbaghia fragrans)

(Fragrant Wild Garlic)

This very pretty, fragrant mauve flower is on a 25 cm spike and opens in winter. It is cheerful to have one in your garden during the brown, dry Highveld winter. The leaves are wider than the Tulbaghia violacea and not as pungent. They are also edible. It grows best in the semi shade and is used medicinally for fevers, cold, asthma and TB.

Veltheimia bracteata

(Bush Lily)

These beautiful flowers look a bit like an Aloe. They stand about 50cm tall and are a striking pink-red in colour. They are deciduous during mid-summer. These are shade loving bulbs growing naturally in the coastal forests of the Eastern Cape. They are happy growing in a pot on a patio.

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