Plant in Focus – Nerine bowdenii

20 October 2014

Nerine is an summer-dormant herbaceous perennial bulb, growing to 45cm tall by 8cm wide. It has long strap-shaped leaves, which appear after the bulb has produced its large umbels of lily-like pink flowers in late summer and autumn. It originates from South Africa and is commonly known as the Cape flower. It can be bought as a bulb which should be planted in early spring in a moderately fertile, well-drained soil. When planting ensure that the top half of the bulb remains above the soil.

Health Fact: The Cape flower is a breathtaking plant, especially on a dull autumn day. It has been proven that indoor plants can enhance moods and increase self-esteem.

Environment: Nerine prefer high direct to high indirect light. They are sub-tropical plants, so if using outside, protect from winter’s freezing temperatures with a deep, dry mulch.

Plant Care: Keep the soil evenly moist but well-drained. If your bulbs are producing less flowers than they have previously, feed in the summer with a potash-rich fertiliser. Nerine are generally disease free.