The anticipation of Galtonia Candicans

Waiting while the buds slowly develop on my four year old Galtonia Candicans is like being a child anticipating the prize from a Cracker Jack. Galtonia Candicans or Summer Hyacinth is not hardy in zone 6a, our garden's hardiness zone. Hardy in zones 7 thru 10 I am able to dig the bulbs up in tact in their soil and transfer to a pot and put in a warmer sheltered place in my garage near a window in the winter months. I water it when the soil looks dry and it basically looks like a pot of dirt all winter long. I label it well to remind myself of the prize inside that pot when during June and July it develops into the gradual bell shaped white flower cascade - perfect for hummingbirds. Ornithogalum candicans or Galtonia candicans is native to moist grassland in South Africa and has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Merit. Much taller than a typical hyacinth it shows beautifully in your garden and is well worth the act of storing it away in winter months. It would make a worth while cut flower for a really unique display. The older the bulbs are, the more apt you will be able to divide and multiply them.

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Suzanne Luby Ahrens