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Haemanthus albiflos AGM

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© RHS

Characteristics

Plant type

Conservatory/Greenhouse, Bulb or Houseplant

Habit

Tufted

Toxicity

Ingestion may cause mild stomach upset; contact might irritate skin

Resilience

Hardiness

H2 (tender - cool or frost-free greenhouse)

Colour

Flower

Green in Winter
White in Autumn

Foliage

Green in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter

Fruit

Orange and Red in Spring

Size

Ultimate height

0.1-0.5 metres

Ultimate spread

0.1-0.5 metres

Time to ultimate height

2-5 years


Preferred common name

paintbrush

Family

Amaryllidaceae


Haemanthus are evergreen or deciduous perennial bulbs with strap-shaped or broadly elliptic leaves and small flowers in dense umbels, sometimes with colourful bracts, and followed by fleshy, white or red fruits

H. albiflos is an evergreen bulbous perennial to 30cm, with spreading, broad, strap-shaped hairy leaves and brush-like clusters to 10cm across, of small white flowers held within broad greenish-white bracts, and sometimes followed by orange-red berries

Synonym(s)

  • Scadoxus albiflos

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun
  • Part shade

Aspect

  • South-facing
  • Sheltered

Cultivation

Plant bulbs with the necks just above the surface, when dormant, in moderately fertile soil. Under glass grow in loam-based potting compost with added leaf mould and grit in full light. Flowering will be prolonged if light levels are reduced when the buds open. Water freely when in growth and apply a dilute balanced liquid fertiliser monthly. Keep just moist when dormant and do not pot on regularly as flowering is best when congested

Soil

  • Well-drained
  • Alkaline or Neutral
  • Loam or Sand

Propagation

Propagate by seed or remove offsets in early spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Flower borders and beds or Underplanting of Roses and Shrubs


How to care

Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

Generally disease free