from 4.50

Tulbaghia Silver Lace is a clump-forming perennial with long greyish-green grassy leaves with cream stripes. Sounds rather dull, but it certainly isn’t, as over a long period from midsummer into autumn elegant stems bear clusters of fragrant starry flowers in a fetching shade of pinky mauve. The leaves smell of garlic if crushed. Full sun. Tolerates dry soils. 18-24 in. 2 litre pot ready soon. Currently available ex 9cm pot.


Tulbaghia are from southern Africa where they enjoy a range of habitats, but, as you might guess, the key factor to growing them here is to give them full sun and a soil that drains reasonably well. Silver Lace is hardy to around -5C so, should things go particularly cold in winter, you might want to protect by straw or mulch to avoid damage to the foliage. Mind you, it’s a good pot specimen, having that attractively variegated evergreen foliage and a constant succession of lilac flowers held on airy stems, so that would allow moving it out of the danger zone if necessary. Best, in any case, to give it a position sheltered from north and easterly winter winds, as with any evergreen.

Society garlic is the common name given to Tulbaghia on account of the scent and flavour of the leaves when crushed (milder than the real thing, mind you) and the leaves and flowers can be used as flavouring or in salads. That slightly odd sounding genus name was coined to honour Rijk Tulbagh, Dutch Governor of the Cape of Good Hope in the 18th century. The species name Violacea is easier to fathom, being a reference to the colour of the flowers. You will find Silver Lace offered under the alternative name Variegata: it’s the same plant.

This (very) brief video focuses on what is admittedly a fine clump of Tulbaghia Siilver Lace.

Very, very nice. 'Nuff said.

Tulbaghia Violacea Silver Lace is a frost hardy perennial plant with grey green and cream grassy leaves and lilac pink flowers in summer suitable for full sun.

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