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Galtonia candicans

Galtonia candicans
summer hyacinth
Galtonia candicans
Demure creamy buds

Synonym(s) Ornithogalum candicans; Hyacinthus candicans
Common name summer hyacinth
Family hyacinthaceae
Life cycle perennial (Z6/7-10)
Flowers creamy white (mid-summer)
Size 4'
Light sun-part shade
From seed easy, germinate at room temperature
detailed seed-starting info below

Bulbous perennial native to South Africa. From a clump of strap-shaped leaves emerge upright stems of creamy white flowers, sometimes tinged with green. Ours started blooming in their third year after starting from seed, but haven't reached anywhere near the four-foot height that they can supposedly attain. Starting from the bottom of a spear of buds, one by one drop torpedo-shaped buds on curvy stems drop down and open a few days later; working its way to the top, the whole show lasts for a few weeks.
Marginally hardy in our climate; our first attempt to overwinter seedlings was not successful, but those from a second attempt have now survived two winters.

summer hyacinth
Buds unfurling at the tip of the spear
Galtonia candicans
Seed boxes developing along the bottom while flowers are still adorning the top of the stem
summer hyacinth
Robust clump in mid-April of their third year

We left this plant behind in our Pennsylvania garden (and wish it well); we don't grow it in Houston.

About my plant portraits
PlantLinks to other web pages about Galtonia candicans

Seed-starting details for this plant

  1. Seed from '05 trade. Baggy 70F (100%G, 8-15d)
  2. Same seed as above. Baggy 70F (no G, 22d)
  3. Seed from '09 trade. Baggy 70F (93%G, 10d)
  4. Seed from '12 garden. Baggy 70F (82%G, 12-17d)
  5. Seed from '12 garden. Baggy 70F (70%G, 9-14d)

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