Nerine bowdenii

Nerine bowdenii, Putney, 3 November 2019
Nerine bowdenii, Putney, 3 November 2019

Attractive, blush-pink clusters of funnel-shaped flowers atop thin stalks, growing to 40-50cm from mid- to late autumn, looking pert and joyful just when everywhere else in the garden is starting to slouch. Strappy leaves appear after the flowers. Look great planted in groups, just below the soil surface, necks just exposed. Somehow, it performs better when congested, and flowering in first year(s) is erratic, plus, it doesn’t like being moved. But when it is in a happy place, it’s a real stunner of an autumn bulb.

H x S: 0.45m x 0.25m

Aspect and soil: Not especially fussy but really best in moderately fertile, free-draining soil that doesn’t get waterlogged in winter, in a warm and sunny site.

Use: In traditional border and gravel or coastal gardens; especially good with grasses and other South African perennials such as Agapanthus and Hesperantha.

Care: Remove tatty foliage once it has died back and protect with a generous, protective dry mulch in colder areas in winter.

Wildlife: —

Hazard: Causes discomfort if ingested.

Origin: South Africa.

Hardiness: H5