I’ve always loved these flowers but for some reason, even when I had very large gardens, I didn’t plant any. Now, in my tiny garden, I finally have some. Not many, about 12 plants in a small area, and even some miniatures in a pot that refuse to flower. Last year I was deeply disappointed that I had only one bloom. They definitely more impressive in large quantities, a big round clump in semi-shade or lining a driveway or even the roadside.
We’re spoilt here in the Cape as they’re indigenous, part of our beloved Cape floral kingdom, and our climate allows us to grow them almost anywhere with no need to protect them in winter. Under normal, i.e. pre-covid, conditions I used to regularly see swathes of them at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens and strips along the road to the city centre. I considered them symbolic of the height of summer. Tall and regal on their single stalks they look beautiful, they withstand the wind, they last long, and don’t require too much attention.
So, I planted a few – bought from two different nurseries at intervals, and every year there is this thrilling anticipation to see if and how many will flower. This year, with so much more time to stand and stare, I was thrilled to see FIVE blooms. Very exciting but I’m greedy enough that I wish they would all flower, and also those miniatures.
Mine are all blue but they also flower white and a gorgeous deep violet that I should not lust after in case I buy some and they don’t deliver.
Here are mine at varying stages of flowering, the last bloom is still not open.
And once again, I post a link to my crowdfunding campaign. The virus is nowhere near finished and I don’t know when I will work again as a tour guide. In the meantime, the bank is hovering like a vulture in case I can’t make my minibus payments and in this country there is no assistance for loss of income – we are on our own. All contributions welcome, big or small, and I thank you in advance.