Bird of paradise is a superb plant, boasting simply magnificent flowers and nicely dense leafage.
Basic Bird of Paradise facts
Name – Strelitzia reginae
Family – Strelitziaceae
Type – perennial
Height – 3 to 10 feet (1 to 3 m)
Exposure – full sun, part sun
Soil – ordinary
Foliage – evergreen
Flowering – May to September
This flower only rarely blooms in our homes, but when it does, you’ll immediately understand where it got its “Bird of Paradise” name!
Planting bird of paradise
Bird of paradise (Strelitzia) is sensitive to frost and can only be planted directly in the ground in regions with mild enough winters.
It normally lives in the warmer regions of the globe that offer rather tropical growing conditions and must be grown in pots and brought indoors in winter if this isn’t the case.
Planting bird of paradise directly in the ground
- plant in spring,
- a very sunny spot,
- a mix of soil mix and garden soil for planting in the garden,
- rather moist soil, cool but well drained.
Planting bird of paradise in pots
- good flower plant soil mix if in a container,
- a partly shaded emplacement to avoid drying up too fast,
- avoid drafts and favor shelter from wind.
Pruning and caring for bird of paradise
If the bird of paradise is well planted and its location suitable, it will only require little care.
No pruning is actually necessary except if you wish to balance the shrub out.
- If so, favor light pruning.
- Eliminate dried leaves as they appear.
Bird of paradise in winter
If it was planted in the ground outdoors, it means your climate will allow for it, and so there isn’t much to do except to protect the plant if ever temperatures drop.
In pots and in areas where winters are quite cold, proceed with bringing the plant inside to a spot where the temperatures stay cool.
- Position the plant in a luminous room.
- The room temperature must never drop below 50°F (10°C) in winter.
- Reduce watering in winter.
Watering bird of paradise
In summer, when the weather is hot, it is important to water bird of paradise often, especially when grown in pots.
- Watering is preferred in the evening to reduce evaporation.
- Avoid wetting the leafage.
- Reduce the watering for the bird of paradise in winter, especially for potted specimens.
All there is to know about bird of paradise
Native to South Africa, it naturally prefers rather warm climate if growing in the ground, otherwise you can plant it in a container and bring it in in winter.
Its natural environment is around bodies of water, which is why it requires a certain amount of soil moisture to thrive.
Watering must be regular but amounts must stay moderate during the entire blooming season.
Smart tip about bird of paradise
To increase blooming, you can add organic fertilizer in spring and renew the application once in summer.