Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Babiana unidentified species, Crimson flower

A number of species of Babiana have bright red flowers, or occur naturally with red flowers.  One such, Babiana ringens was listed in the catalogues from 1843.  Of the Cape species, this being the most likely source, Babiana thunbergii Ker-Gawl., which see, and Babiana villosa (Ait.) Ker-Gawl. in its bright crimson form are perhaps the most likely possibilities, although the former is recorded at Camden.  [CECB].

Horticultural & Botanical History

No historical data.  Babiana villosa is figured in Rice, pl.CCXV.

History at Camden Park

Bulbs of ‘Babiana crimson’ were sent from Camden to Wm. Macarthur Esq. in February 1844, the only reference to this plant.  [MP A2948-3].  Wm. Macarthur Esq. is presumably a member of the extended Macarthur family but I have found no other references to him.


Published Oct 18, 2009 - 02:46 PM | Last updated Aug 17, 2011 - 03:36 PM

Three species of Babiana are figured, the red-flowered B. villosa is on the right.  Rice, pl.CCXV.

Babiana villosa (Ait.) Ker-Gawl. | Rice, pl.CCXV | CM

Family Iridaceae
Region of origin

South Africa, Cape district

Common Name

Baboon root, Baboon flower

Name in the Camden Park Record

Babiana crimson  

Confidence level