Ornithogalum juncifolium is a hardy, evergreen, bulbous plant that has slender, grass-like bright-green leaves.
It bears masses of flower spikes with small, white, star-like florets from September to March that are a sight to behold.
The flowers make a delicate cut flower, and also attract insects to the garden.
Plant in amongst grasses or as part of a mixed perennial bed.
Cut back after flowering.
Plant in full sun for best results, but it will also flourish with half a day’s sun or in semi-shade.
Size 20 - 30cm
Setaria sphacelata var. sericea is a hardy, evergreen, beautiful, neatly-tufted grass.
It bears dense, golden inflorescences of hairy flowers from October to May that look like miniature bulrushes.
It attracts birds to the garden and is the host plant of various butterfly species.
Although this is a tall grass, it is neat and narrow and does not go wild.
It makes a lovely form plant and can be planted in a grassland garden, as a backdrop to a colourful bed or mass-plant for a beautiful effect.
As with most grasses, it should be cut back once a year and the thatch removed.
It grows in sun or semi-shade, and needs regular watering.
Size: 70cm to 1.2m
Zantedeschia aethiopica ‘Green Goddess’ is a very hardy, evergreen perennial with big heart-shaped leaves. It has a distinctive large, white and green cone-shaped petal and a central yellow column which carries the tiny flowers and pollen. The flowers are borne all year round.
When the bloom dies, the central column develops into a dense mass of small, fleshy fruits that are relished by birds. Porcupine and pigs eat the underground tubers hence the common name ‘Varkoor’.
Used for medicinal and culinary purposes.
Melianthus major is a hardy, evergreen, decorative shrub with large, neatly serrated, blue-green, compound leaves that are strongly aromatic when touched. From July to October the maroon flower spikes are carried above the foliage, and their dripping nectar attracts Sunbirds and insects to the garden. The black seeds are carried in decorative, pale-green translucent bladders.
Used medicinally. Needs to be pruned back hard after flowering. The plant will then send up beautiful new shoots and look neat and tidy. Prefers a damp situation and makes a good accent plant in sun or semi-shade particularly near water. Plant in well-composted soil and ensure adequate watering for best results.
Size: up to 2,5m
Aloe ecklonis is a very hardy evergreen to deciduous, grass Aloe that has broad leaves with white-toothed margins. The rosettes of leaves alone are most attractive. It flowers in summer from November to January, with characteristically short flowering stems. The flowers vary in colour from yellow or orange to salmon-pink and even rarely red.
It is an attractive garden subject as a large number of inflorescences are borne simultaneously. Plant in amongst grasses in a grassland garden or as an attractive form plant in garden beds or containers.
It has medicinal and magical uses and the leaves can be eaten as a vegetable.
Plant in full sun or light semi-shade, and if not in moist soil, water well and regularly.
Size up to 40cm