The Temperate Database is in the process of being updated, with new records being added and old ones being checked and brought up to date where necessary. This record has not yet been checked and updated.
Sparaxis bulbifera is a Corm up to 0.60 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food.
Sandy or rocky slopes at low altitudes[
]. Wet sandy or limestone flats[
Requires a light well-drained soil in a hot sunny position[
]. Prefers a rich soil[
This species is not very cold-hardy in Britain, when grown outdoors it is best planted about 15cm deep on a south facing wall in November[
]. Apply a mulch over the winter to protect the corms from cold[
]. The corms must be kept dry after flowering, at a minimum temperature of 10°c. It is best to lift the corms when the leaves die down, store them in a dry place and to replant them in November[
]. In areas with cool summers the plant might not manage to develop adequate corms for subsequent growing[
]. This species is often found growing in moist or wet soils in the wild, and is more tolerant of wet conditions than other members of the genus[
Plants produce bulbils on the flowering stems, when plants are grown in a greenhouse these bulbils can sow themselves around freely[
The bulbous tubers are edible[
]. No further details are given in the reports.
Seed - sow early spring in a greenhouse in a light potting mix. The seed usually germinates freely within 6 weeks but the seedlings are liable to damp off so make sure you give them plenty of ventilation. It is best to sow the seed thinly so that it is not necessary to prick out the seedlings in their first year of growth. If necessary, give them some liquid feeds during the growing season. Divide up the small bulbs when the plants have become dormant at the end of the first growing season. Grow them on for at least another year before planting them out. This species often flowers in its second year from seed.
Division of offsets. This is best done when the dormant plant is lifted in summer. Larger bulbs can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found it best to pot up the smaller bulbs and grow them on in a cod frame for their first year, planting them out when dormant in late summer.
Bulbils. These are freely produced on the flowering stem. Pot them up when they start to fall off the plant, keep them fairly dry until late autumn, then water them lightly through the winter.