Sydney Garden Designer Michael Cooke - Michael Cooke Garden Design

Rare African bulbs

With a few wet days the garden has revived. Some plants don’t mind if they never receive a drop – and this is how it is with the blood lily Haemanthus coccineus. Native to South Africa, it receives little water over the summer months.

I grow mine in pots which date back to the 1940s and as well as for the flowers I grow these for their curious leaves. These appear soon after the flowers are spen, and there are just two of them to each bulb. They are like enormous tongues which hang over the edges of the pots.