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Dietes bicolor

Fortnight Lily, African Iris

  • Category: Drought Tolerant, Perennial
  • Mature Height: 2-3'
  • Mature Width: 2-3'
  • Light Requirements: Full Sun to Partial Shade
  • Water Requirements: Moderate to consistent
  • Hardiness Zones: , ,

This South African native, and iris relative, produces beautiful yellow flowers with maroon patches at the base of the petals. In warm climates, this rhizomatous evergreen perennial forms a clump that expands over time and flowering is continual through the growing season. Flowers only last one day, but are quickly replaced by new flowers the next day. To encourage more flowers, remove the seed pods as they form. Foliage is strap-like and looks very much like iris foliage in the landscape. In cooler climates, Dietes is best grown as an annual or container plant that can be protected in winter. Plants bloom best in a sunny location, however in hot regions they prefer some afternoon shade. While Dietes can tolerate some dry soil conditions, they perform best with regular watering. Plants are tolerant of most pests, but are sometimes susceptible to rust.

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