Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Bird of Paradise, Crane Flower
Strelitzia reginae

Family: Strelitziaceae
Genus: Strelitzia (stre-LITZ-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: reginae (ree-JIN-ay-ee) (Info)

5 vendors have this plant for sale.

64 members have or want this plant for trade.

View this plant in a garden

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Medium Blue

Bloom Time:
Late Winter/Early Spring
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)
From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

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to view:

By Kell
Thumbnail #1 of Strelitzia reginae by Kell

By Evert
Thumbnail #2 of Strelitzia reginae by Evert

By Floridian
Thumbnail #3 of Strelitzia reginae by Floridian

By Evert
Thumbnail #4 of Strelitzia reginae by Evert

By Evert
Thumbnail #5 of Strelitzia reginae by Evert

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By Baa
Thumbnail #7 of Strelitzia reginae by Baa

There are a total of 78 photos.
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25 positives
6 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive keenamateur On Sep 10, 2014, keenamateur from Porvoo
Finland wrote:

I must be really lucky if your other comments are to be believed. Whilst in Madeira last Christmas I bought 2 packs of seeds of bird of paradise plants one usual pink and one blue. these were off the market and in small plastic bags so not commercial.
I live in Finland so potted some of these indoors just to see what would happen so far I have 6 plants >YES 6. the first 4 are of the blue variety and now have 4 leaves each. the others I am not sure as I did a mixed batch and two have just come through within the past week or so . again indoors.
I don't suppose I will ever dare to put them out in the garden given our winters but am really pleased with the success so far. No idea how long before they should flower but can wait and see. cheers thanks for listening

Positive normasloan On Sep 22, 2013, normasloan from Buckhead Ridge, FL wrote:

Bought Bird of Paradise plant at wholesale nursery in Martin County, FL. Planted in Okeechobee, Fl about a month ago. Day three of blossom. Mulched and fertilized and watered heavily daily for first week. Then rained heavily for several days afterwards. Watered with shower on hose head setting by wedging between stalks for about 1/2 hour. My yard man suggested this, plus took us to nursery to pick out plants.

Positive juku On Aug 14, 2011, juku from York Point, NS (Zone 5a) wrote:

I bought a huge plant (25 gal pot) with numerous blooms from a nursery owner last summer. At Christmas I splitted it into 4 smaller plants using a hand saw. I gave 3 away to friends as present. Currently, mine is blooming and so are everyone else's. Great plant!

Positive morgrok On May 20, 2011, morgrok from Milwaukee, WI wrote:

morgrok here or should I say morgram here again. My bird-of-Paradise update....I said I was going to get my now 23 year-old strelitzia to bloom again. Well, it's fixin' to do it. I have a stem! Earlier I attributed my difficulties to irregular watering. Actually that has not been the problem. I guess I always knew what the problem was, not enough nutrient intake. I always passed on feeding the thing but after eight years without flowering I had to face facts. My strelitzia has come around thanks to liquid plant food. Always keep in mind that the strelitzia is a gross feeder or a nutrient hog if you like. I once again look forward to seeing that spectacular flower later as we enter the summer. After an 8 year pause some family members were hesitant to believe my strelitzia is once again going to bloom but it is. I am quite proud and I would not be at all surprised if my particular plant is one of the best mature specimens in the northeast part of our country.

Positive geniebug On Dec 27, 2010, geniebug from Torrance, CA wrote:

I live in Southern California. My Bird of Paradise is on the southwest corner of the house in a dry area. For years it bloomed infrequently then I started watering it once a week with everything else and it has gone crazy with the blooms now.

Neutral Jackie5_0 On May 11, 2010, Jackie5_0 from Summerville, SC wrote:

I bought a small BOP (looekd about 2 years going by pics on here) last summer from a home improvment store, they advised me I could keep it outside but cover it on cold nights. Other sites had said it was hardy in 8b, just to mulch the base. We had a VERY harsh winter, 6' of snow, lots of frosty nights and the coldest since Ive been here. I covered it up most frosts, but it didnt seem to make it. Once it warmed up I cut it back and left it in the ground incase any parts survived.
I had put a fern in the line of sight to hide the ugly dead stumps and forgot about it. I was thrilled today when I was weeding I saw a new shoot about 4" long poking out of one of the stumps!!
I plan to dig it up and pot it too keep in the sunroom over the winter. I wondering though if I'll ever be able to keep it out in the ground year round?

Positive eGreenGardens On Nov 20, 2009, eGreenGardens from Bundaberg
Australia wrote:

I have two Strelitzia reginae plants which are about 8 years old and flower regularly. I would like to grow more using their seeds and have been checking them regularly for seed pods ... but none to be found. Does anyone have any ideas? Also, does anyone have a picture of where the seed pod in relation to the flower or can you describe where I should be finding it.

Thanks heaps!

Positive morgram On Nov 13, 2009, morgram from Milwaukee, WI wrote:

My strelitzia is 21 years old but has only bloomed twice probably do to irregular watering on my part but I am hopeful I can get it to bloom again. Last time I transplanted it was back in 1997 into a big white container. It is now quite rootbound. The whole thing now weighs a ton and it would take a chainsaw to remove it from it's container. I did not plant it in 3 parts potting soil, peat and sand like they tell you too just 100% percent potting soil so I've always had a lot of leaves. It's still a pretty robust 21 year old strelitzia and I'm gonna get this sucka to flower again!

Positive stephenp On Nov 12, 2009, stephenp from Wirral, UK, Zone 9a
United Kingdom (Zone 9a) wrote:

A lovely plant, world famous of course.

Mine has yet to flower but I am expecting to do so soon!

At the moment this is growing in a pot for me, I have thought about planting it out but don't have the room. It's the age old adage of keeping them dry in winter, if this is achieved they are fairly hardy and in my experience can take up to about -5C.

Here in minimum temperature zone 9a, where there is cover it is well worth trying outside, however as mine is currently small and many of my palms and plants that would be used as cover are fairly small also, I will keep it in a pot, so if a very cold spell comes about I can move it.

The only downside about this plant is that it doesn't grow too fast here, with less sunshine than the south coast of UK (although more than central/northern UK), it only puts out day 4 leaves a year which means that it doesn't make huge amounts of growth in a year.

However the ability to survive some of the inclement weather that Uk throws at it, plus for it's beauty I have rated this a positive experience.

Positive Linda_CA On Mar 24, 2009, Linda_CA from Riverside, CA wrote:

My S. reginae is approximately 15 years old, and is over 5 feet tall and 6 feet in diameter. It's planted at the northwest corner of the house, and although was slow to get started, it now blooms continuously--and most of the flowers are doubles. It continues to flourish with minimum care...despite the Santa Ana winds that plague Southern California. It has survived winds of 70 mph. I have shared many offshoots with friends and family. One of my favorite plants.

Positive Upir On Oct 17, 2008, Upir from Jupiter, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

I found this plant tossed outside for the garbage man at the mall where I used to work in NJ; I brought it home, where for 2 months it did nothing but sit there looking rotten. Now, I've moved to FL, where I promptly put the big guy out on my balcony. What a difference! In the space of 3 months it's already grown 3 HUGE new leaves, and looks like it's working on a 4th (or maybe a whole new stalk?)... I can't wait to see if I can get it healthy enough to bloom! Surprised how willingly it was brought back to life - hardier than I thought, I guess!

Positive agentdonny007 On Oct 8, 2008, agentdonny007 from Las Vegas, NV (Zone 8b) wrote:

Beautiful plant! Adds tropical look to north/east exposure. Leaves burn too much with afternoon sun due to high light intensities in desert. May need protection on frosty nights but well worth the appeal:) I have grown this plant with little protection but it was near the wall of my house.

Positive AarronIkarus On Aug 21, 2008, AarronIkarus from Onalaska, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Our greenhouse has two of these: one in the back (which gets more shade), and the other in the front (which gives it more sunlight). The one in the back has bloomed twice this summer. The one in the front has never bloomed to my knowledge.

Positive orchid_time On Oct 12, 2007, orchid_time from Lakeville, MN wrote:

I grow my S. reginae in a pot in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota. I grew it from seed back in late 1980s. It first set buds in an 8" pot after becomming root bound and left out on the patio till near frost conditions, was brought in-doors for the winter and bloomed all winter long. I eventually transplanted it up to a 16 to 18" pot, and the thing weight a ton to move, but would have over 30 blooms in a season. I divided it and down-sized the pot to a 12-14" pot, and now its movable again and still has lots of blooms.

Positive eliasastro On May 20, 2007, eliasastro from Athens
Greece (Zone 10a) wrote:

Very showy plant with really tropical appearance.
It can tolerate our cool winters (avg. 50 F), cool winds, and even light frosts!
In the last great snowfall of Athens in February 2004 (min. temp. 23F/-5C, the lowest since many decades) the unprotected plants died down and grew again in spring.
Hand pollination is necesarry in my area and it was done succesfully in early spring, despite the lack of warm temperatures.

Positive hesi On Jan 11, 2007, hesi from Auckland
New Zealand wrote:

Hi, I have grown Strelitzia reginae and also the juncea and parvifolia for about the last 5 years in 60litre bags. All plants are grown by propagating divisions from large excavated clumps.
Success rate is about 95%, and most plants flower within 9 months.
I am currently producing seed off the plants, which has been successfully germinated(90% rate). The main requirement being bottom heat(25 C plus)
The main requirement for Strelitzia is sunlight. Too much shade gives lanky plants that flower less. Also they are frost intolerant but will generally handle any temperatures above that.
In my collection of about 2,500 plants, I have several white reginae, whereby the blue/purple petal is actually a pure white.
Has anyone come across this before, I have uploaded a photo.

Positive phoenixtropical On Jul 18, 2006, phoenixtropical from Mesa, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

The tropical bird of paradise grows great in Phoenix Arizona, especially on the northern side of the house. It is easy to take care of but takes a long time to start blooming.

Positive scottstang On Apr 9, 2006, scottstang from Palmdale, CA wrote:

I live in Palmdale, CA, which is in the high desert of Los Angeles County. I have seen this plant growing here in Palmdale and in the neighboring city of Lancaster. In fact I've even seen blooms in the winter here. This is interesting in that it gets down into the 20's here and we recently had light snow. Luckily here in L.A. county they can be purchased quite inexpensively. This is one of my favorite plants!

Positive fluffygrue On Jul 15, 2005, fluffygrue from Manchester
United Kingdom (Zone 8a) wrote:

Lovely plant, this. I've not yet had flowers, but leaf growth is very glossy and green, so I'm hopeful.. This one never sees real sunlight as it's behind a thin curtain, and it's happy.

I'd suspect browning of leaves was either too much/little water or scorching from too much direct sunlight.

Positive Kelli On May 27, 2005, Kelli from L.A. (Canoga Park), CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

Official flower of the city of Los Angeles.

Very easy to grow here. Blooms mainly in winter and spring in hot summer areas.

Neutral miltonmama On Apr 3, 2005, miltonmama from Milton, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

I, like k5cents, have a strelitzia whose tips curl and turn brown. Is this normal?

Positive njreis On Feb 9, 2005, njreis from Tiverton, RI wrote:

I have had my Bird of Paradise for 10 years now. Its in a big 14" pot. in the winter it's inside in front of a south facing window. It usualy folowers just after Christmas. In the summer it goes back out side on the deck in semi shade/sun. I usually cut the growth back every fall when I bring it inside so I can share the living room with it. I like it but it is a little to big! I would like to replace it with a dwarf form that I have read about. I have seen seeds for the dwarf form, but I don't want to have to wait 5 years for it to bloom again! Anyone know of a domestic supplier of the dwarf form?

Positive pokerboy On Aug 27, 2004, pokerboy from Canberra
Australia (Zone 8b) wrote:

A great plant with exotic flowers and large leaves. Drought tolerant once established. It can survive tempuratures to -8 in a sheltered position. That means under a pergola or patio roof in a pot. Mine did anyway andf it was quite young. Does well in semishade. Good for seaside gardens as the leathery leaves withstand the salt breeze. It is a interesting plant. pokerboy.

Neutral greyyhawkk On Jun 10, 2004, greyyhawkk from Seattle, WA wrote:

Palmbob -- where would one order the rare yellow-leafed variety?

Positive Monocromatico On Apr 6, 2004, Monocromatico from Rio de Janeiro
Brazil (Zone 11) wrote:

Although Bird of Paradise has in Rio de Janeiro the perfect conditions to grow, people seem to avoid it. I dont know why. Its a beautiful plant, with great flowers, and doesnt demand more care than the regular plants.

Neutral K5CENTS On Nov 18, 2003, K5CENTS wrote:

I'm wondering why the leaves on my Bird of Paradise turn brown on the tips and curl. When they emerge, they are a beautiful light green. The plant was a gift from a friend, and is becoming quite large, growing in a south-facing window where it receives indirect/filtered light.

Positive suncatcheracres On Nov 18, 2003, suncatcheracres from Old Town, FL wrote:

This plant grows everywhere in St. Petersburg, Florida, zone 9b. It is used a lot in commercial landscaping, as well as residential yards. In recent years the Tampa Bay Area has become a "heat island," due to all of the development and concrete, and with less than the usual rainfall, but these plants still do very well there despite the often drought conditions and water restrictions.

Neutral nipajo On Nov 17, 2003, nipajo from Dallas, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

My sister bought 4 seeds home from Hawaii, this year. I put mine in a pot and then forgot it. After I bought most of the plants back inside for the winter I noticed sprouts in the pot. They are still small but are very noticeable. one is just above the pot, am anxious to see the results.

Positive palmbob On Jan 6, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

In Southern California, where this plant is grown all over, both in public and private gardens, as well as along streets and businesses, it is a very hardy plant. It does exceptionally well even in most of zone 9. It is also fairly drought tolerant, though also difficult to overwater. It is one of the easiest plants to move and divide, having short, very fleshy rhizomous roots that, though very brittle, recover easily and quickly.

There are several varieties of this plant, both in size of leaf, color of leaf (some blue-green) and particularly in the flower. A few varieties have double flowers, some have flowers with an exceptional amount of red or vermillion at their base, and there is a rare yellow-leaf variety (collector's item).

When the flower dies, the preferred method of 'pruning' is to yank the flower spike from the plant (careful in newly planted plants or the whole plant may come up). Otherwise, over time, the plant gets a messy, sloppy look with all the dead flower and leaf bases remained. Older plants can be recognized by their exceptional size, producing flower and leaves up to 7' in length (over 20 years).

Neutral Baa On Sep 9, 2002, Baa wrote:

A large, evergreen, frost tender perennial from South Africa.

Has large, lance shaped, greyish-blue green, thick leaves borne on long stalks. Bears large, orange, green and purple half canoe shaped spathes with bright orange/yellow calyx and blue corollas.

Flowers mainly between December - May but I've seen it in flower throughout the year.

Likes a deep, fertile, well drained soil in sun or partial shade and dislikes too much sun during the hottest part of the day.

I've seen this grown outside all year in Southern England with a heavy mulch. Needs frost protection.

Sow seed at 65-70F, germination may be erratic. Expect to wait at least 3-4 years for the first flowers.

Positive Evert On Sep 4, 2002, Evert from Helsinki
Finland (Zone 4b) wrote:

Pretty plant with big leaves and exotic flowers. Often used in flower arrangements. Easy to grow from seeds.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

, (2 reports)
Mesa, Arizona
Phoenix, Arizona
Queen Creek, Arizona
Surprise, Arizona
Yuma, Arizona
Ashland, California
Canoga Park, California
Chowchilla, California
Clovis, California
Delano, California
Desert Hot Springs, California
El Cerrito, California
Elk Grove, California
Folsom, California
Fresno, California (2 reports)
Garden Grove, California
Hemet, California
Lakewood, California
Los Angeles, California
Merced, California
Modesto, California
Oak View, California
Rancho Mirage, California
Reseda, California
San Diego, California (2 reports)
San Jose, California
Santa Barbara, California (2 reports)
Spring Valley, California
Thousand Oaks, California
Torrance, California (3 reports)
Upland, California
Vincent, California
Walnut Creek, California
Whittier, California
Woodcrest, California
Bartow, Florida
Beverly Hills, Florida
Big Pine Key, Florida
Bokeelia, Florida
Brooksville, Florida
Cape Coral, Florida
Clearwater Beach, Florida
Delray Beach, Florida
Dunnellon, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Hernando, Florida
Hollywood, Florida
Holmes Beach, Florida
Inverness, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida (2 reports)
Keystone Heights, Florida
Kissimmee, Florida
Lakeland, Florida
Lecanto, Florida
Longwood, Florida
Maitland, Florida
Marathon, Florida
Naples, Florida
New Port Richey, Florida
Okeechobee, Florida
Oldsmar, Florida
Orlando, Florida (2 reports)
Port Charlotte, Florida
Port Orange, Florida
Port Saint Lucie, Florida
Saint Cloud, Florida
Sanford, Florida
Spring Hill, Florida
Tampa, Florida (2 reports)
West Palm Beach, Florida
Winter Haven, Florida
Augusta, Georgia
Dalton, Georgia
Honomu, Hawaii
Wahiawa, Hawaii
Baton Rouge, Louisiana (2 reports)
Bordelonville, Louisiana
Lafayette, Louisiana
New Orleans, Louisiana (3 reports)
Slidell, Louisiana
Thibodaux, Louisiana
Vacherie, Louisiana
Leakesville, Mississippi
Las Vegas, Nevada (2 reports)
Alden, New York
Cincinnati, Ohio
Bluffton, South Carolina
Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
New Ellenton, South Carolina
North Augusta, South Carolina
Hendersonville, Tennessee
Westmoreland, Tennessee
Alvin, Texas
Austin, Texas (3 reports)
Baytown, Texas
Brazoria, Texas
Broaddus, Texas
Brownsville, Texas
Cibolo, Texas
Corpus Christi, Texas (2 reports)
Dallas, Texas
Decatur, Texas
Georgetown, Texas
Houston, Texas (3 reports)
Katy, Texas
La Porte, Texas
La Vernia, Texas
Mcallen, Texas
Missouri City, Texas
Port Arthur, Texas
Portland, Texas
Robstown, Texas
San Antonio, Texas (2 reports)
Santa Fe, Texas (2 reports)
Onalaska, Washington

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