Flowers of South Africa

© Roger de la Harpe
Cosmos Flowers near Clarens in South Africa.
South Africa has a fabulous array of indigenous flowers that enhances the country’s natural beauty and diversity. One of South Africa’s marvels is its incredible diversity of plant and flower species found in the Cape Floral Kingdom (or the Cape Floristic Region) on the country’s Western Cape. The region includes exquisite flowers such as the king protea (South Africa’s national flower). has extensive information on the country’s flower species, translated into 11 official languages to provide people with factual, educational insight into South Africa’s biodiversity.Eight National Botanical Gardens are situated throughout the country in five of South Africa's six different biomes. When Kirstenbosch, the most famous of the Gardens, was founded in 1913 to preserve the country's unique flora, it was the first botanical garden in the world with this ethos. What makes the Gardens so famous worldwide is that only indigenous plants are cultivated.

Barberton Daisy

The Barberton Daisy has become an emblem of South African organisations and was the symbol for the Blue Bulls, a famous rugby union based in Pretoria. It also appears on the flag and coat of arms...more

Blood Lily

The blood lily prefers shady areas in the grasslands and rocky outcrops of the northern parts of South Africa and further northwards to Tanzania....more

Candelabra Flower

The candelabra flower sprouts from a huge bulb about 200mm in diameter covered in thin brown skin-like scales. A perennial herb, the plant grows...more

Day Waterlily

The waterlily is one of the most honoured plants on the planet. Legends have it that it that when Buddha died, flowers starting blooming wherever he had walked. The waterlily is the national...more

Devils Thorn

The devil thorn is a small annual creeper with long hairy stems. A common plant bearing small claw-shaped thorns and purple flowers, it flowers in the South African summer from December to April....more


Gazanias shallow roots prefer open grassland regions of South Africa such as the arid of the Northern Cape Province and certain areas of the Western Cape coast and interior such as Namaqualand (the wildflower region...more

Impala Lily

The flowers of the impala lily are about 5 cm in diameter. This plant blooms in July, but where cultivated they can flower as late as mid-September....more

Krantz Aloe

A Krantz aloe plant has many stems and thick leaves that are yellow-green in colour, sharply spiked and contains a slimy yellowish sap....more

Kudu Lily

During autumn, the kudu lily blooms and its white flowers appear. This succulent shrub has a thick stem and spiked, finger-like branches. Its leaves are shiny and green with wavy edges....more

Mountain Aloe

The mountain aloe blooms during the months of June and August. Orange, tubular flowers are carried on stocky stems and branches. These plants are tall and have a single stem coated...more

Pineapple Flower

The pineapple flower blooms in December. The flower head grows a dense cluster of flowers from its stem. This plant grows from a bulb that measures...more

Pride of de Kaap

The pride of de Kaap blooms during March and April, but may flower as early as November. Its flowers vary from a salmon pink to orange, yellow to white in colour....more

Red Hot Poker

The flower heads of the red-hot poker are a dull red-orange, but in summer turn yellow to green-yellow when they open. The flowering stem reaches...more


The seeplakkie has an extensive root network throughout the sand dune, which aids in stabilising the shifting sands. The thick waxy leaves is an adaptation to help prevent water loss in the harsh dune environment....more

Sweet Prickly Pear

The sweet prickly pear is succulent that grows paddle-shaped stems covered in sharp spines. This leafless plant is also an alien indigenous to South America. It bears edible plum-shaped spiny fruits....more


The Watsonia of South Africa has four long sword-shaped leaves that can grow up to 90 cm in length. The lowest leaf is usually the longest one. The plant has a depressed corm...more

Wild Dagga

Wild dagga can be found in South Africa in Limpopo and the Kruger National Park. It prefers savannah and dense bush or shrub as its habitat....more

Wild Ginger

A wild ginger plant blooms during October to November. Its dainty flowers vary in colour from pale pink to light purple and are 60 to 80mm in width....more

Wild Hibiscus

The wild hibiscus is a small tree or bush that blooms during summer. The colour of the flowers vary from yellow to pink and have a darker centre in its cup-shape, where the stamens and stigmas join to form a stalk....more

Yellow Arum Lily

The arum lily usually blooms in October, and it is a perennial herb. Its rootstock has many buds and is a fleshy rhizome. This plant is not eaten or used in any medicines or treatments....more