Strelitzia reginae, or the Crane Flower, is unmistakably South African. It looks exotic but is one of the most popular houseplants and fortunately, we can now enjoy our national flower even without a large property thanks to the dwarf variety. The mini-crane flower only grows to about 1-1.8 metres high and has smaller flowers and leaves than its better-known counterpart.
How to grow Strelitzia indoors
When grown indoors as a house plant, the dwarf Strelitzia grows quite slowly but will give the owner years of pleasure. Its bird-like orange and blue flowers rise above the dark green foliage from late winter to late autumn. In order to grow Crane flowers as house plants it is necessary to position them in an area with high light or sunlight for 4-6 hours of the day and out of draughts in order for them to flower successfully. They will also require temperatures of over 20°C throughout their flowering season and prefer to be a bit pot-bound to flower.
Strelitzias require a well-drained, fairly rich soil but do not like being overwatered so allow the soil to dry out between waterings. Feed with a well-balanced liquid fertiliser every two weeks during the flowering season.