Sunday, November 23, 2008

Ground Orchids

This orchid grows on our rockery. We give it no attention whatsoever but it flowers each year at this time - a great addition to the garden.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Ammocharis coranica

This member of the Amaryllidaceae family normally grows in open areas in Acacia or mopane woodland on silty or alluvial soils and on flat ground. Here it grows in our rockery and seems completely at home. It can be found in both Zimbabwe and South Africa and usually grow in colonies - this one is one its own!

In Swaziland the charred bulbs are made into a tar like paste which is used for making head rings for Chiefs. and the paste is used in the north-eastern Transvaal for water proofing earthenware.
Surprising enough there are still a number around!
The flowers last for about three to four days and become pinker as time goes on. The outer flowers come out first and then the centre flowers so one gets a lovely bouquet by the second day - by the third the flowers are dying off.

Friday, November 7, 2008


This grows everywhere in our garden. it has been used by the indigenous people as a cure for cancer and for AIDS. It is a lovely plant - so very green and with wonderful bright yellow flowers. there are a number of varieties and it is sometimes called the African potato

Monday, November 3, 2008

Scadoxus multiflora

Known as the 'common fireball' this lovely plant flowers in October through to December. We are lucky enough to have this specimen in our garden.

Although widely spread throughout Africa it is usually only encountered in the wild.

It can be seen on the outcrops above the Victoria Falls.

We planted this specimen last year and it appears to like its spot on the rockery.

This one appears to have a good inflorescence - some plants only have about ten flowers in each clump.

The name is derived from Greek and means 'sharp umbel'.