• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Strelitzia nicolai

white bird of paradise

  • Other common names white bird of paradise

  • Synonyms Strelitzia alba subsp. nicolai

  • Family Strelitziaceae

  • Genus Strelitzia are evergreen perennials, forming a clump of long-stalked, linear to broadly oblong leaves, with stiff stems bearing beak-like bracts from which strikingly coloured flowers open in succession

  • Details S. nicolai is a massive, evergreen perennial, with oblong, grey-green leaf blades up to 1.5m long on 2m long leaf stalks. In spring it produces blue and white flowers, opening in succession, from blackish, beak-like spathes

  • Plant range S Natal, NE Cape

Characteristics

  • Foliage Evergreen

  • Habit Clump-forming

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)

    H1B

Colour

Sunlight

  • Full Sun

  • Partial Shade

  • Aspect South-facing or West-facing or East-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered

Soil

  • Chalk

    Chalk

  • Loam

    Loam

  • Sand

    Sand

  • MoistureMoist but well-drained, Well-drained

  • SoilChalk, Loam, Sand

  • pHAcid, Alkaline, Neutral

Size

  • Ultimate height 8-12 metres

  • Ultimate spread 4-8 metres

  • Time to ultimate height 10-20 years

How to grow

Cultivation Under glass grow in loam-based compost, in a large container or greenhouse bed, in full light with shade from hot sun. During growth, water freely and apply a balanced liquid fertiliser monthly. Top dress annually and repot every second year. Water sparingly in winter and ventilate when temperatures exceed 20°C. Can be grown outdoors in a frost-free, moist but well-drained, fertile soil with protection from strong winds. See strelitzia cultivation

Propagation Propagate by seed sown at 18-21°C in spring or division of rooted suckers in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types Wall-side Borders Cut Flowers City & Courtyard Gardens Patio & Container Plants Mediterranean Climate Plants Sub-tropical

How to care

Pruning No pruning required

Pests May be attacked by scale insects, glasshouse red spider mite and mealybugs

Diseases Generally disease free

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