Tigridia: How to grow the amazing tiger flower plant in your garden
Tigridia, commonly known as Tigerflower or Mexican Shell Flower, is a fabulous, very showy summer flower. The shape and coloring of the bloom is unusual, and interesting. Tigerflowers closely resemble Gladiola, with large, flared flowers in an array of two-toned combinations of pink, red, white, yellow, cream and orange colors. Triangular shaped petals of solid colors embellish the outer edges of the flower with a contrasting center that resembles a tiger’s spots, thus the genesis of its name.
Tigridia are bulbous perennial plants with slender lance-shaped foliage and colourful open-mouthed blooms with gorgeous contrasting central markings. Tigridia are best suited to flower beds and borders within a city or courtyard garden. Alternatively, they are ideal for container planting.
These eye-catching plants have interesting and unusual shape. They produce attractive sword-like leaves and large, showy, three-petaled flowers in a variety of colors. There is no doubt that Tigridia is one of the most spectacular plant in the summer garden.
Tigridia are best planted in well-drained soil of loam or sand within an acidic, alkaline or neutral PH balance. Tigridia thrive in a position of full sun. When planting, make sure you dig a hole that is 10 cm deep, and 15cm apart. Plant in masses to create a gorgeous and colourful display.
Planting and Growing Tigridia
Plant the corms/bulbs 10-15 cm deep in March-April. Site in a sunny sheltered situation, in a rich well-drained loam.
The flowers only last for a day but they are borne in succession.
The colours are so strong and striking they are best grown in a small group on their own.
Taking Care of Tigridia
Water well and apply a liquid fertilizer regularly while growing.
To ensure good blooms next season, cut off the old flower spikes as soon as they have faded and allow the leaves to die down naturally.
Tigridia is only hardy down to about -2°C, therefore, in cold regions dig up the bulbs after flowering and overwinter packed in dry sand, in a frost-free place. Replant in late spring.
Alternatively, Tigridia can be grown in containers, plunge pots or bulb baskets and moved into a cool, dry but frost-free area over winter.
Pests and Diseases
Slugs may attack the young leaves and flowers. Can be affected by a virus.
Separate offsets when the corms are lifted in autumn. Alternatively, sow seed under glass, at 15°C, in spring.