Monday, 21 October 2013

Pink dog rose (Rhodohypoxis)

Over the past week one after another of my little terracotta pots of Rhodohypoxis has begun to bloom, and now they are a mass of soft pink, deep rose, cerise and apple blossom. Spring’s warm breath has wrought its magic; now I know summer is on its way.

Rhodohypoxis is a small genus of tuberous flowering plants from south-eastern Africa, a region of summer rainfall with relatively dry winters. The little flowers, on stems barely 8cm high, have inwardly bending tepals so the centre of the flower is not visible, making this flat bloom quite different to all others, and its charm is matched by its ability to flower prolifically, right in the middle of spring, joining the clamour of the floral orchestra – now a cacophony.

A sunny spot with good drainage are the simple requests from this undemanding, diminutive but sweetly showy bulb.

Jill Weatherhead is garden designer and principal at Jill Weatherhead Garden Design ( working in Melbourne, the Dandenong Ranges and Victoria.

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