- Bulbine – bulbous plants.
- frutescens – shruby
- Snake flower, stalked Bulbine (Eng), geelkatstert, balsemkopiva (Afr), ibhucu and elimpofu (Zul).
- Small, star-shaped flowers that have feathery stamens.
- Borne on an upright inflorescence (30 cm).
- Flowers open (and close) progressively from the bottom of the spike upwards.
- Free flowering.
- The leaves are elongated and cylindrical, (up to 15 cm by .5 cm), tapering to a pointed tip.
Bulbine frutescens and Felicia ameloides grown together and complementing each other very effectively.
In the Garden:
This plant is a useful groundcover in areas where regular maintenance is difficult.
Can be very showy when mass planted.
Very popular with landscape designers for dry and cold areas that require tough plants.
A very water-wise plant.
Planted with plants with blue flowers, like Felicia ameloides or blue Agapanthus can create a wonderful effect.
Plant a few plants close to the house as a medicine chest for burns, bites and stings.
- A low maintenance garden plant.
- Feed with a mulch of compost.
- Plants respond well to fairly regular watering.
- Remove the old flower heads to encourage more flowering and to keep plants neat.
- Very drought resistant, but responds well to regular watering.
- The flowers attract adult butterflies
- Bees are attracted to the flowers.
- The sap from the leaves is widely used as a treatment for cuts, burns, rashes, acne and eczema.
- This sap will also bring relief to bee and scorpion stings and mosquito bites.
- It can also be used to treat cracked lips.
- The leaves contain compounds that are very similar to those found in Aloe vera
- Have often, incorrectly, been called Bulbinella.
- Found in the western NC, WC, EC, Les, FS, KZN, Swa, M, L, G and NW.
- Endemic to southern Africa.
© Malcolm Dee Hepplewhite & Witkoppen Wildflower Nursery, (Text and Photographs) 2013 & 2018.