Scientific: Sparaxis tricolor
Common: harlequin flower, wand flower
Family: Iridaceae
Origin: South Africa

Pronounciation: Spa-RAX-is TRI-co-lor

Hardiness zones
9, 12-24 as in the ground perennial; otherwise in colder zones dig and store during the winter
USDA 8-11 as perennial, otherwise dig and store

Landscape Use: Diminutive flower accent, container plant, gift pot plant

Form & Character: Upright, and slender, cheerful.

Growth Habit: Herbaceous perennial producing tunicate corms, upright and without branches to 1.5 feet in height.

Foliage/Texture: Greenish, linear to lanceolate leaves, basally produced leaves to 1 foot long; medium texture.

Flowers & Fruits: Funnel form flowers with 3 stamens to 2 inches in diameter, filaments not united. Flower borne on spikes in loose clusters, having a yellow center around which is ringed a darker color (brown) around which is usually ringed with red, pink, orange or purple; fruits are a 3-valved capsule and are not ornamental.

Seasonal Color: Flowers bloom over a long period during the spring.

Temperature: Avoid high heat of western exposures.

Light: Full sun to partial shade.

Soil: Tolerant of slight alkainity.

Watering: Regular supplemental water IS a necessity in Phoenix.

Pruning: None really. But if one feels inclined to "garden", then remove the spent flowers.

Propagation: Division of corms

Disease and pests: None

Additional comments: Wand flower is a nice border plant for old fashioned gardens themes and mesic garden areas, particularly when used in mass to create a wild splash of color. However, it's not a good choice for desert or dry garden sites. In wet garden sites, harlequin flower can naturalize if plants are allowed to "go to seed".