This late summer/autumn flowering Gladiolus (pypie) has relatively small (30-40mm) flowers and does not grow to a height of more than about 85 cm. On Grootbos and surrounding areas it has pink flowers, although elsewhere the flowers can vary in colour from cream to mauve. The lower tepals usually have a yellow band edged in darker pink. It is usually leafless when flowering, except for the sheathing leaves on the stem, the lowest of which is rust-tipped. The single, usually hairy leaf is produced only after flowering is over. It is unscented, grows mainly on sandstone soils and is found between Piketberg and Cape Agulhas.It is one of the many Cape bulb species that has become a popular horticultural plant around the world.
So why a fynbos blog? We have always been fascinated by the remarkable flora of the Cape. From a distance it looks like dull grey-green stuff, but get up close and you will find that it is teeming with life, is full of fascinating stories and has many uses. Enjoy!