In search of the blood lily

I spotted this striking beauty under a tree outside my office today.  The flower is followed by fleshy red berries, which the monkeys and birds love.  I’ll try to remember to take a photograph of the berries when they come through.  The bulb is traditionally used to cure coughs, headaches and stomach problems.  The plant is also known as Paintbrush (charming), Rooikwas and isiPhompo.

The Blood Lily.

The Blood Lily.

At home under a tree.

At home under a tree.

5 Responses to In search of the blood lily

  1. zelda wahl August 30, 2009 at 8:51 am #

    It looks like Scadoxis puniceus

  2. Sonya August 31, 2009 at 3:15 pm #

    I saw one of these lonely little things under a tree in the botanic gardens just last weekend. Good to know a bit more about it.

  3. JenntE February 28, 2010 at 7:19 am #

    I think it is Haemanthus coccineus as it has no leaves. Scadoxis has large leaves when flowering

  4. Merle Mulder April 10, 2010 at 12:37 pm #

    I was given one of these bulbs by a farmer years ago, and now have many growing around the garden. In summer they have large, lush leaves which at this time of the year suddenly flop over and start to die. I cut them down, and then up come these lovely flowers.

  5. Danuta Dyk December 22, 2014 at 11:56 am #

    Nusia Dyk
    I started with one blood lily some years ago. They flower early before anything else – but they also multiply like mad; seems the berries, as well as the doubling-up bulbs, produce new plants. Luckily I have a large garden!

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