Babiana is a large genus of about 80 species in the Iridaceae family. Most are concentrated in the winter growing region of Southern Africa.
All babianas are deciduous, either winter or summer growing. Like most other winter growing (or Mediterranean climate) bulbs in the Iridaceae family, they start their growth cycle in autumn when the first rain falls and the temperature get cooler. Babiana species flower from early spring to summer. Start to water them in autumn, water through the winter, and stop watering in late spring when the plants show signs of going dormant. They will do best in a sunny position and the plants are drought tolerant.
Growing medium – they all require well drained potting mix consisting of 2 parts sand, 1 part loam/soil. Babianas can pull their corms to the bottom of the pot, so they tend to grow best in large pots, or also grow well in the garden.
Most of the babianas that are commonly grown are hybrids of Babiana stricta, and the flowers are long lasting and brightly coloured, and many are scented as a bonus.