Bulbine frutescens

Leaves, stems, flowers, buds
Common Name: orange bulbine 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asphodelaceae
Native Range: South Africa
Zone: 9 to 11
Height: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: April to June
Bloom Description: Yellow or pale orange
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Ground Cover
Flower: Showy
Tolerate: Drought, Shallow-Rocky Soil


Best grown in evenly moist to dry, well-draining soils in full sun. Tolerant of some light shade. Drought tolerant once established, but provide supplemental irrigation for best growth and flowering. Can be grown in poor, rocky soils, but also does well in richer soils. Cut back spent flowering stalks in summer to create a tidier appearance and to encourage reblooming in the fall. Propagate through division. Hardy in Zones 9-11.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Bulbine frutescens, commonly called orange bulbine, stalked bulbine, or simply bulbine, is a herbaceous, succulent perennial native to river banks and sandy, coastal hillsides in South Africa. Mature plants can reach 1-1.5' tall with an equal width and will form spreading colonies. The thickened, stout stems can reach up to 1' long and are typically branched, bearing rosettes of leaves. The narrow, linear foliage reaches 6-9" long and 0.25" wide. Racemes of small, 6-petaled, yellow or pale orange flowers with frilly stamens are held on 2' tall stalks from late spring into early summer with some reblooming in the fall.

Genus name comes from the Greek word bolbine the name of a bulbous plant which came from the Greek word bolbos meaning "bulb".

The specific epithet frutescens means "shrubby", in reference to the branched stems and growth habit of this species.

The common name orange bulbine refers to the color of the blooms, which can have an orange coloration. The common name stalked bulbine refers to the branched stems and growth habit of this species.


No major pest or disease problems.


Mass planting, path edger, or ground cover in mixed border fronts, rock gardens, and Mediterranean gardens. Suitable for xeriscaping or containers. Can also be planted among larger rocks for a more naturalistic look. The fleshy leaves have been used medicinally similar to Aloe vera.