Watsonia (Bugle Lily)

Watsonia is a genus of about 50 species of perennials in the family Iridaceae, native to southern Africa.
Watsonia produces sword-shaped or lance-shaped leaves and showy spikes of tubular flowers with spreading lobes.
With their bright colors and tall flowering spikes, these lovely plants will add a colorful vibrance to any landscape. Give them sunshine and some occasional water and they will pull out a smile from your face every time you see them!

Name meaning

Its genus name is given in honor of English botanist, physician and naturalist Sir William Watson (1715-1787).

The common name “Bugle Lily” is derived from its distinctive bugle (or trumpet) shape.

Watsonia symbolism

Watsonia symbolizes innocence, purity and chastity.


Interesting facts about Watsonia

Cape Bugle Lily (Watsonia borbonica)

Watsonia borbonica is a perennial plant that produces pink or white trumpet-shaped flowers on tall flower spikes. It is native to South Africa, where it is found on rocky, well-drained slopes or sandy soils.
The plant is particularly abundant following a fire, during the first and second years after disaster. It provides a major source of food for nectar feeding insects and birds in areas that have burnt.

Is Watsonia Invasive?

A few species, such as Watsonia meriana var. bulbillifera, have become aggressive weeds in Australia, New Zealand and California.

Watsonia Plant Data