Strelitzia reginae

A striking shrub/perennial with clumps of grey-green leaves and a unique orange and blue flower.
FLOWER COLOUR:  
AVERAGE SIZE (H) x (W): 1.2m x 1.2m
FLOWERING TIME:   J F M A M J J A S O N D
FRUITING TIME:   J F M A M J J A S O N D

This bold structural plant produces unusually-shaped and striking flowers that are well loved by the floral industry.   The orange and purple flower resembles a brightly-coloured bird in flight.

Indigenous to the Eastern Cape, this tough evergreen perennial can withstand dry spells and can also tolerate mild frost, recovering quickly if affected.

ECOLOGICAL BENEFITS:
Sunbirds and mousebirds will be seen harvesting nectar from these plants which are rich in nectar.

NATURAL HABITAT & DISTRIBUTION:
Rocky grassland.

MAINTENANCE:
Strelitzia is low maintenance and will give you a stunning display for many years without needing to be split.
Cut back drying leaves and flower stalks to neaten the plant.
A very beneficial plant to grow for flower arrangements as the flowers and foliage are long-lasting in a vase.

WATER REQUIREMENTS:
Water moderately.

GARDEN THEMES:
Forest, rockery, succulent, woodland

LANDSCAPING USES:
An architectural plant suitable for gardens of different sizes.
It is used in office complex gardens and parks.
It can be mass-planted for a stunning effect.
FLOWERS:
The strelitzia bears a unique flower that resembles a bright-coloured bird in flight (or a birds beak and head plumage) giving it the common name 'Bird of Paradise'. The flowers stand above the foliage at the tips of long stalks.
FOLIAGE:
The grey-green banana-like leaves are evergreen and sometimes have a slight tinge of red in the central vein.
FRUIT:
SEED:
The black seeds are pea-sized with orange fuzz on one end.
CULTIVATION:
Strelitzia is easy to grow from seed if one is patient enough to wait 3-5 years for the plants to start producing flowers.
Germination is more successful if the seeds are fresh as older seeds develop a hard coat that prevents germination.
Remove the orange tufts from the seeds. Soak in lukewarm water for 24 hours. Scarify the seed lightly then sow in potting soil. Keep moist. Germination should occur in 2-3 months. Transplant to individual pots or ground when seedlings have 3-5 leaves.

FULL GALLERY:
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