South African 'Sun Star' shines for up to three months

Lauren Bonar Swezey,  – March 28, 2005

South Africa is home to a rich variety of plants, many of which are known for their stunning blooms. One rising South African star in stores this spring is Ornithogalum ‘Sun Star’. Its vibrant orange blooms stand out like a beacon amid pastel-colored gift plants like azaleas and orchids.

‘Sun Star’ is widely available this month in nurseries and home centers. It’s easy to grow and long blooming―up to three months. Indoors, set in bright light, keep the soil moist, and remove spent bloom spikes. In mild climates (Sunset Western Garden Book zones 8, 9, 14-24), you can move the plant outdoors after bloom. Put it in the ground in well-drained soil or transplant into a larger container. When leaves die back in summer, avoid watering and gradually allow plants to dry out (leaves will appear again with winter rains). Apply a dilute solution of fertilizer in early spring.