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Cape Hyacinth Ornithogalum

Previously known as:

  • Galtonia
Phonetic Spelling
or-nith-oh-GAY-lum
Description

This fragrant and showy bulb prefers rich, well-drained soil and to be buried to a depth of 4 in. (10 cm) and spaced 2-5 in. (5-12 cm) apart.  It looks great in borders fronts, but can also be used as a ground-cover or grown in containers.  Remember that it dislikes being disturbed so choose its location wisely.

As other perennial flowers are fading, these tall, white-flowered spikes rise later in the summer and early fall. Above long, dark green, strap-shaped leaves, the spikes rise as high as 4 feet with as many as 30 pendant, bell-shaped flowers on each spike.  The flowers are long-lasting and make excellent cut flowers for arrangements. They open gradually from the bottom to the top of the spike and the leaves die back gradually after flowering. 

Tolerant of many climate ranges, it is considered semi-hardy Tender III plant, injured below 28 degrees F.  In colder climates, bulbs can be lifted, dried, and stored over winter for planting in the spring.  When planting, bury bulbs to a depth of 6 in. (15 cm) and space them 8-12 in. (20-30 cm) apart.  It naturalizes easily.
Grows best in full to PM Sun.  

 

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
O. arabicum, O . saundersiae, O. thyrsoides, O. umbellatum
Tags:
#bulb#showy flowers#fragrant flowers#white flowers#container plant#perennial bulb#cut flowers#cottage garden#flower arrangements#moist soil#well-drained soil#children's garden#summer bulbs#tender bulb#english garden#naturalized area#border front#late summer flowers#walkway planting#flowers early fall#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
O. arabicum, O . saundersiae, O. thyrsoides, O. umbellatum
Tags:
#bulb#showy flowers#fragrant flowers#white flowers#container plant#perennial bulb#cut flowers#cottage garden#flower arrangements#moist soil#well-drained soil#children's garden#summer bulbs#tender bulb#english garden#naturalized area#border front#late summer flowers#walkway planting#flowers early fall#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Ornithogalum
    Family:
    Asparagaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Bulb
    Perennial
    Bulb Storage:
    Bulbs can be lifted, dried, and stored over the winter in colder climates. Store bulbs dry in vermiculite at 63-72 degrees F (17-23C).
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 10 in. - 1 ft. 4 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 2 in. - 0 ft. 5 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Bulb
    Perennial
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b, 10b, 10a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Green
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Spike
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Good Cut
    Long-lasting
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Bell
    Flower Petals:
    6 petals/rays
    Flower Description:
    White bell-shaped flowers with green center that are long lasting, fragrant, and make good cut flowers. Blooms open gradually from the bottom to top of the spike.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Fleshy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Strap-shaped foliage dies down after the flowers fade.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Bud Scales:
    Enclosed in a single cap like scale
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Naturalized Area
    Walkways
    Landscape Theme:
    Children's Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Cutting Garden
    English Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Black Walnut