01 Jan

Winter Blooming Plants for Landscapes and Gardens: Ixia

Ixia is a genus of winter blooming plants from the family of Iris –this sharing many attributes with its cousin: grassy leaves, stalks of colorful and fragrant flowers, and generally low maintenance plants. Originally native to South Africa, Ixia has been grown in Europe for a long time from where a number of popular hybrid varieties have been propagated that spread in many parts of the world.

Winter Blooming Flowers of Ixia

Ixia Paniculata, Image by dracophylla (flickr)

Ixia are cormous plants that usually bloom in winter and go dormant in summer. These plants are characterized by grassy leaves and rich stalks of star-shaped flowers. Flowers are bi-colored, that is, red, mauve, pink, yellow, white, cream or purple flowers with a contrasting color in center. These richly colored flowers have a hint of fragrance that attracts pollinating bees.

Ixia are sun-loving plants and prefer a well-drained, sandy soil in rocky landscapes or containers. The best place to grow Ixia is a sunny corner of the garden where they receive bright sunlight in winter and moderate water throughout the season. When grown in flowering beds, Ixia present a spectacular show when they are in bloom. Corms should be picked, treated with a fungicide powder and stored for the entire summer season.

Ixia are grown from seeds or corms that divide themselves every year.