Anchusa capensis is a drought hardy annual or bi-annual that grows vigorously, is upright, and has bright green, rough leaves and stems. It has a fairly weedy appearance.
The stems of brilliant blue flowers are borne throughout Spring and Summer and into Autumn. Each little blue flower is beautiful when looked at closely. They have a white feathery centre (these are actually scales that protect the reproductive parts of the flower).
Gazania gazoo Citrus Mix is a hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, sun loving groundcover with glossy leaves.
This vigorous Gazania produces large flowers on strong stems in spring and summer. They are free flowering with a long flowering season.
This hybrid mixture of orange and yellow flowers even open under low light conditions. Needs well-drained soil and moderate water.
Ideal for a rockery and for stabilizing soil on banks as well as for mass planting and containers.
Size 15 to 30cm
Albuca shawii is a hardy, deciduous bulb with very thin, dark-green leaves that are covered in short, sticky hairs.The leaves have a faint smell of liquorice when crushed.
The flowering spikes bear a spray of beautiful, nodding, delicately-scented yellow and green flowers from September to February.
A beautiful addition to a rockery, short grassland garden or meadow of delicate, bulbous plants.
They prefer full sun but can take light semi-shade. Plant in well-drained, loamy soil and do not over-water. If planting in a grassland, make sure that they are not swamped by too many tall grasses.
Size: up to 40cm
Eragrostis gummiflua is a very hardy, evergreen to semi-deciduous, perennial grass with sparse, hard, tough leaves.
It bears attractive, large racemes of pink to purple flowers and seeds on stiff branches from November to May.
Parts of this grass are quite sticky, hence the common name.
Plant in a meadow garden where its attractive seed-heads add texture. It is quite unpalatable to grazers. This hard grass is used to make durable brooms.
As with all grasses, to keep it healthy, it should be cut back once a year and raked to remove the thatch. Plant in sun or semi-shade in well-drained, sandy or gravelly soils. Water well to keep it looking its best.
Size: Flowering stem up to 90cm
Papaver aculeatum is a very hardy, evergreen annual to perennial groundcover with a basal rosette of grey-green attractive leaves.
It bears beautiful, papery salmon-pink poppies on long stems from early spring to late summer.
This rare little plant takes well to cultivation and stays perennial for a few years and will seed itself quite freely.
It is beautiful planted amongst smaller grasses which is also its natural habitat.
Plant in well-drained soil.
Aloe boylei is a very hardy, deciduous grass Aloe with large flat, upright, broad leaves that end in a point and have a few white spots at the base and white teeth on the margins.
It blooms from November to February in a flattish inflorescence. The lovely tubular, salmon pink flowers, taper off to green tips.
The leaves can be cooked and eaten.
A beautiful addition to a well-irrigated grassland garden and makes a good container plant.
Grow in wet conditions in full sun.
Size to 50cm
Senecio speciosus is a very hardy, evergreen, clump forming perennial with finely toothed leaves arranged in a rosette at the base of the plant.
The beautiful sprays of intensely mauve to lilac flowers adorn the grasslands throughout late winter, when they send out sprays of lilac pink daisy flowers against the drab of sleeping grasslands. Flowering continues into the middle of summer.
Flowers provide nectar and pollen to many pollinating insects, including bees.
A beautiful addition to a meadow or grassland planting, provided it receives sufficient water.
Prefers a damp, sunny spot in loamy soil to thrive. Mulch well to retain soil moisture. Plant in full sun or partial shade.
Size to 30cm
Dianthus namaensis is an extremely hardy almost tufted evergreen perennial with narrow grey green leaves and masses of pale-yellow flowers. It has a long flowering season and is a sight to behold when in bloom. The flowers are carried well above the leaves and will nod in the slightest breeze.
It is on the Sanbi Red Data List as a species of "least concern", but it is found seldom enough to be part of their Threatened Species Programme.
Use in a border, in amongst rocks or in containers. Plant in sun in well-drained soil.
Gomphocarpus physocarpus (was Asclepias physocarpa) is a very hardy, evergreen, upright soft shrub with pale yellowish green branches and light green, lance-shaped leaves. From November to April it bears pendulous clusters of white flowers with a pinky-purple centre (corona). These highly specialized flowers are pollinated by vespid wasps. The distinctive inflated fruits are yellowish-green tinged with purple, and covered in hair-like structures. All parts of the plant weep poisonos white latex when damaged or cut.
It is the host plant of the African Monarch Butterfly (Danaus chrysippus orientis) and the toxic alkaloids that the caterpillars ingest are carried through to the pupae and the butterfly to make them highly distasteful to predators. The fruit are decorative in a vase – make sure not to get any of the sap / latex on the skin and wash hands thoroughly after handling.
Beautiful in a grassland garden or as a tall feature at the back of a flower bed.
Plant in full sun or very light semi-shade, in well drained soil.
Size: up to 2m
Bulbine abyssinica is a very hardy, evergreen, drought resistant, succulent plant with grass-like, fleshy leaves in a basal rosette.
Dianthus basuticus is a delicate looking almost tufted evergreen to deciduous perennial that is extremely hardy. It has narrow, grass-like grey-green leaves. It bears masses of delicate, scented pink or white flowers with carnation-like fringed petals from October to February which attract insects to the garden. The flowers are carried well above the leaves on fragile looking stalks that nod in the breeze.
An important medicinal and magical plant that is rare in cultivation. Use in a border, in amongst rocks or in containers.
Plant in sun in well-drained soil.
Size: Up to 25cm
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