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 rubro-cyanea (Jacq.) Ker-Gawl.

Frost-tender cormous perennial with hairy leaves and spikes of variously coloured flowers, but typically mauve with bright red centres, in spring.  To 20cm.  [RHSE, Hortus, CECB].  Considered by some authors to be a form of Babiana stricta (Ait.) Ker-Gawl., which see.

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘The Ixia here represented was drawn last summer from a specimen unusually fine, which flowered with Mr. Colvill, Nurseryman, Kings-road, May 24, 1797; it appears to be a very distinct species, not less distinguished for the singularity than the brilliancy of its colours, and is one of those recently imported from the Cape by way of Holland.  It is propagated in the same way and succeeds with the same treatment as other Ixias; care must be taken when it comes into flower that it be not too much exposed to the sun, for that will render its beauties of very short duration.’  [BM t.410/1798].  Introduced to Britain in 1794.  [JD].  

History at Camden Park

Listed in all published catalogues [B.47/1843].


Published Oct 18, 2009 - 01:50 PM | Last updated Jul 23, 2010 - 11:44 AM

Figured are lance-shaped leave and blue flowers with red centre.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.410, 1798.

Babiana rubro-cyanea (Jacq.) Ker-Gawl. | BM t.410/1798 | BHL

Family Iridaceae
Region of origin

South Africa, Cape district

  • Ixia rubro-cyanea Jacq. 
Common Name

Red-eyed baboon root

Name in the Camden Park Record

Babiana rubro-cyanea 

Confidence level high