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.

Oxalis hirta L.

Variable, frost-hardy bulbous perennial with crowded, narrow leaflets and solitary, open funnel-shaped, white, red-pink or purple flowers with yellow throats in autumn and winter.  To 30cm.  [RHSE, Hortus].  

Horticultural & Botanical History

Oxalis hirta, rosacea, and rubella, are very nearly allied; perhaps too much so to be properly considered as distinct species.  If they are to be distinguished, our plant [Oxalis rubella], having obtuse petals, must be referred to the last mentioned.  Drawn at Mr. Salisbury’s Botanic Garden at Brompton, in October, but its proper time of flowering is probably in the spring.  Native of the Cape; requires the shelter of a green-house; propagated by tubers; introduced, according to Mr. Donn, in 1793.’  [BM t.1031/1807]. 

‘A native of the Cape, and a very showy species: it flowers in the autumn, and thrives in sandy peat soil.’  [LBC no.213/1818].  Introduced to Britain in 1787.  [JD].

History at Camden Park

Listed in all published catalogues [B.373/1843].


Recorded as a weed in the southern and western states of Australia but not in NSW.

Published Jan 28, 2010 - 03:24 PM | Last updated Jan 28, 2010 - 03:32 PM

Figured are narrow leaflets crowded around the leaf stem and deep pink flowers.  Loddiges Botanical Cabinet no.213, 1818.

Oxalis hirta L. | LBC no.213/1818 | RBGS

Family Oxalidaceae
Region of origin

South Africa

  • Oxalis rubella Willd.
  • Oxalis rosacea Jacq.
Common Name
Name in the Camden Park Record

Oxalis hirta 

Confidence level high