Search Indigenous Plant Attributes

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  1. Rhoicissus digitata

    Rhoicissus digitata is a hardy, evergreen, robust, woody climber that has attractive foliage. The three or five-partite glossy leaves have russet colored new growth and tendrils for climbing. It can climb up to 10 meters or more or make a mounding shrub about 1.5

  2. Cotyledon orbiculata Grey Leaf

    Cotyledon orbiculata is a very hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, succulent shrublet that has smooth, round, grey leaves that are edged with red.

    The umbels of pendulous, orange-red flowers grow on long stalks and are borne from June to August. The nectar in the flowers attracts birds, bees and other insects.It is also an important medicinal plant.

    This plant needs well-drained soil and looks great planted in pockets in a rock garden.It is a very variable plant and there are many different sub-species and forms.

    Plant in sun or semi-shade in well-drained soil.

    Size: 40 to 80cm

  3. Cotyledon orbiculata Pigs Ear

    Cotyledon orbiculata Pigs Ear is a very hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, succulent shrublet that has smooth, round, green leaves that are edged with red.

    The umbels of pendulous, orange-red flowers grow on long stalks and are borne from June to August.

    The nectar in the flowers attracts birds, bees and other insects. It is also an important medicinal plant.

    This plant looks great planted in pockets in a rock garden. It is a very variable plant and there are many different sub-species and forms.

    Plant in sun or semi-shade in well-drained soil .

    Size: 40 to 80cm

  4. Syzygium guineense

    Syzygium guineense is a hardy, small to medium sized, fast-growing, very attractive, evergreen tree with a weeping habit, that can be grown in wet areas and even in shallow water. The bark on young trees is silver becoming pale-grey and patched with many different lichens with age. The grey-green leaves are red when they first appear.

    The heavily scented white flowers with copious nectar have conspicuous, fluffy stamens and are borne in large heads on the tips of the branches from October to May.

    The decorative, edible, shiny, bright-purple fruit are borne in December which turn the tree into a natural Christmas tree. Birds such as bulbuls, starlings, mousebirds and barbets relish the fruit while the fallen fruit is eaten by guinea fowl and francolin. Fruit bats and bush babies also feast on the fruit.

    It is the host plant to the Apricot and Brown Playboy Butterflies.

    The plant also has many traditional and medicinal uses.

    This very variable species can be grown near water as a single specimen or in clumps to create a forest feel.

    Plant in sun or semi-shade.

    Size up to 10 meters.

  5. Watsonia pillansii

    Watsonia pillansii is a very hardy, robust, evergreen, clump-forming, bulbous Watsonia with pale green, slightly twisted strap-like leaves.

    It bears spikes of orange flowers on and off all year with its peak flowering time from September to April.

    It grows and flowers best when it has compost rich soil, sufficient water and sun, although it tolerates semi-shade as well.

    It makes a good accent plant, but is also beautiful for mass planting and retaining soil on banks. It adds structure and form on the dry edges of ponds.

    A popular garden plant and a good cut flower.

    Size: Up to 1 meter

  6. Pavetta gardenifolia

    Pavetta gardeniifolia is a hardy, deciduous, sometimes evergreen large shrub or small tree with glossy dark green leaves.

    The beautiful clusters of creamy-white, sweetly scented, nectar- rich flowers are borne at Christmas (November to January) hence the common name. The flowers attract a whole host of birds including sunbirds and insects that feast on the nectar. The black fruits that follow are edible and attract fruit eating birds.

    Plant in sun or semi shade in well composted soil.

    It is a little slow growing but very worthwhile.

    Size: 2 to 4 meters

  7. Cyperus alternifolius

    Cyperus alternifolius is a hardy, evergreen, medium sized sedge with a long green stem topped with a circle of flat green bracts at the end of each stem.

    The clusters of brown flowers stand out above the green bracts in summer.

  8. Chionanthus peglerae

    Chionanthus peglerae is a fairly hardy, rare, medium to large sized tree with a straight stem, grey-brown bark and glossy, stiff leathery leaves.

    It bears inconspicuous sprays of white or cream flowers from August to February. The attractive, fleshy black fruits have white dots on them with a ridge across them which makes them look a bit like a duck's bill. The fruits attract birds to the garden.

    Plant in a forest garden or a single specimen in the cooler part of the garden where it gets morning sun, not the hot afternoon sun. It requires well-drained, compost rich soil.

    Size: 5 to 30 meter

  9. Allophylus natalensis

    Allophylus natalensis is a hardy, evergreen shrub or small tree with smooth or wrinkled, greyish-brown bark. It has a dense crown of firm, shiny, dark green, Searsia (Rhus)-like, trifoliate leaves.

    Massed clusters of small whitish green, sweetly scented flowers are borne from March to July and attract butterflies and other insects.

    The clusters of conspicuous shiny red, edible berries can weigh the branches down. They make a lovely show from June to August and attract birds.

    A beautiful tree for small gardens as well as a great screening plant that can also form a decorative, specimen shrub once established.

    Plant in sun or shade, in well drained soil.

    Size: 2 to 5 meter

  10. Panicum maximum

    Panicum maximum is a very hardy, evergreen, clump-forming, robust, densely-leafy, perennial grass. It bears delicate, flowering stems of tiny creamy-coloured seeds with purple sheaths.

    From September to March it produces flowers and seeds that the seed-eating birds go mad for. A must for a bird garden as both food and nesting-material plant. It is the host plant of the Eyed Brown butterfly. An excellent grazing grass.

    Plant around ponds, in a grassland or even under trees, where it grows well in shade, semi-shade or sun. Cut back to 5 to 10cm above ground level in winter and remove the thatch.

  11. Aristida congesta congesta

    Aristida congesta subsp. congesta is a very hardy, delicate, perennial, tufted grass with long white hairs where the leaf meets the stem.

    It bears compact spikelets at the tips of the stems from Dec. to Jun.This tough pioneer grass can be used to stabilise soil or cover bare patches to protect the soil. It is pretty planted amongst flowering plants in a meadow garden or in a grassland garden.

    It is unfussy about the soil type it is planted in and will thrive in all but waterlogged soils. As with all grasses it should be cut back once a year and raked to remove the thatch.

    Size: Flowering stem up to 90cm

  12. Aloe burgersfortensis

    Aloe burgersfortensis is a hardy, quite small, drought resistant stemless aloe that grows singly or in groups. The leaves are variable and can be from dull brownish-green to bright green with few white spots.

    Red flowers are arranged on a tall, branched flowering stem in June and July and attract insects and sunbirds.

    This is a common Aloe in the Burgersfort, Steelpoort and Barberton areas. Planted in well-drained soil in large numbers in full sun or partial shade they will brighten up a winter garden.

    Size: 20 to 30cm