Lachenalia aloides var. aurea Lachenalia aloides var. aurea in the annual Lachenalia display in the Five Arrows Gallery at Exbury Gardens, Hampshire (Richard White)
SABG Lachenalia logo


Southern African Bulb Group

This is an old version of the SABG web site

This copy of the SABG web site is not being updated. It will gradually be dismantled and recycled. Please go to instead, where you should be able to find everything that was on the old web site. Please let me know if you have any comments (Richard White

The Autumn meeting is on Sunday 7th October 2018

Newsletter no. 36 (April 2018) is now available

Paul Cumbleton's hardiness questionnaire is here (April 2018)

Do we have your correct email address? An email was sent on 2nd April 2018 and newsletter 36 on 7th April to all SABG members. If you are a member and didn't receive it, please email Richard White (see Contacts on this page).

Autumn 2018 meeting

The Autumn meeting of the Southern African Bulb Group will be on Sunday 7th October 2018, at Badger Farm Community Centre, Winchester, UK. Doors open at 10:00 a.m. and the meeting will finish at approximately 4:00 p.m.

The speaker for the morning session at approximately 11:00 a.m. will be SABG chairman Paul Cumbleton, who will talk about “Growing and propagating South African winter-growing bulbs”.

All who are interested in growing these plants will be welcome. There is an entry fee of £3.00, but parking is free. There will as usual be a plant display table, photos, short talks, plant sales (a good reason to arrive soon after 10:00!), and tea and coffee with biscuits. You are encouraged to bring along any plants you wish to display or sell, or digital photos to share with the audience. Bring your own lunch, or buy something at Sainsbury's next door.

Further information

Future meetings

  • Sunday 7th October 2018: Our next SABG meeting. More details of the meeting are given above and on the meetings page.
  • The next SABG meetings after that will probably be on Sunday 7th April 2019, and Sunday 6th October 2019, but these dates are provisional.

Latest newsletters


  • The SABG web-site started in October 2006. I am very grateful to Andrew Jones and Cardiff University who provided a server on which we ran the web-site for more than ten years at no cost to the SABG. It is time for our web-site to be put on a more secure long-term footing. It is now being hosted in the UK by Kualo Ltd., who say they provide “fast, secure & rock-solid hosting”, a claim backed by a “99.9% Uptime Guarantee“ and many positive reviews. They also have strong environmental credentials: their servers are housed in an energy-efficient data-centre powered by energy from green renewable sources. [Richard White, 13/07/2017]
  • I'm experimenting with a new version of our SABG web-site. It will hopefully look smarter and more modern, make it easier to maintain and update, and in due course make it possible for members to contribute directly. [Richard White, 10/04/2018]

About the Group

The SABG is based in the UK and is for anyone interested in growing the beautiful and diverse bulbous plants of South Africa and neighbouring countries. You do not need to be an expert (I'm not!) or live in the UK, but our meetings have all been in England so far.

The objective of the Southern African Bulb Group is to further the understanding of the cultivation of Southern African bulbs, where 'bulbs' is used in the broad sense to encompass bulb-, corm- and tuber- possessing Southern African plants, which are mostly 'monocots' (plants with strap-like leaves and flower parts in threes or sixes) but also including 'dicots' (with broad leaves and frequently five-petalled flowers) such as Oxalis.

Our activities include two meetings per year with talks and plant sales (recently these have been in Winchester in southern England), an annual bulb and seed exchange, and a newsletter with three or four issues per year.

Many of these plants come from the former Cape Province, now the Northern, Western and Eastern Cape Provinces, and are easy to grow in a cool greenhouse or a sunny conservatory or window sill. They usually provide colourful flowers in autumn and winter and need a dry period in summer, because they are winter growers. Some are summer growers and a few of these will grow outside in southern or sheltered parts of the UK, such as Agapanthus, some Nerines and Tulbaghias, etc. Others, like Lachenalia, are real jewels to brighten up your conservatory when not much else is in flower.


To join the group, or to enquire about joining:
Rodney Sims

To enquire about the newsletter or web site, to send suggestions for additions and improvements, or to submit items for inclusion:
Richard White

Southern African Bulb Group Calendar

Autumn 2014 display table
The display table at our Autumn meeting on 12 October 2014, showing a variety of species of Nerine, Lachenalia, Massonia, Empodium and other genera.
[Click here for a larger version, which might let you read the labels, especially if you click again to enlarge the resulting image further]

This public Google Calendar shows SABG meetings and related information which you can browse through and perhaps add to your own calendar. [Click on the triangles to move to March/April or October, when one of our meetings and perhaps other events should appear; if you click on one you can see a map, get directions, copy the event to your own calendar, etc., courtesy of Google. If you have your own Google or Gmail account, you may wish to add our public calendar (“SABG”) to your own private Google Calendar, so that all the SABG events will appear on your Android smartphone or tablet.]

Veltheimia sp.
The flower spike of Veltheimia sp. in my conservatory in Hampshire. This plant may be V. bracteata or V. capensis or a hybrid between the two.
(Richard White, 28 March 2014)
Nerine filifolia
Nerine filifolia in the new conservatory at Kirstenbosch Botanic Garden at the foot of Table Mountain in Cape Town.
(Richard White, April 2006)
Lachenalia pustulata
Lachenalia pustulata in cultivation in Hampshire, UK.
(Richard White)
Haemanthus coccineus
Three plants of Haemanthus coccineus in April 2006, growing in a very stony soil at Cape Agulhas, the southernmost point of the continent of Africa, within a few yards of both the Atlantic and the Indian Ocean.
(Richard White, April 2006)

Copyright © 2018 by the Southern African Bulb Group. All rights reserved. This page was last edited by Richard White on 10th April 2018.