Photo by heidirose1 (All rights reserved)
This plant has no fragrance
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Ribbon Bush Overview
This rounded shrub has dark green oval leaves and attractive light purplish to pink or white flowers that bloom from Autumn, through Winter until Spring. The flowers attract pollinating insects, which in turn attracts insectivorous birds and the flowers can also be cut for flower arrangements, as they last long in water. In some areas the leaves are eaten like a spinach and crushed leaves are used as a traditional medicine for sore eyes. While Ribbon Bush is a fairly low-maintenance plant, it does need to be pruned back after flowering to keep tidy.
Common problems with Ribbon Bush
Ribbon Bush is generally not bothered by pests or diseases.
How to harvest Ribbon Bush
The flowers can be harvested by cutting them for cut flowers. The cut flowers last well in water. The leaves can be harvested on a cut-and-come-again basis.
How to propagate Ribbon Bush
Sow seeds shallowly in Spring. Germination takes 3 weeks.
Water softwood cuttings regularly during the establishing phase, and add a good quality compost.
Special features of Ribbon Bush
Insectivorous birds, such as Puffback (Dryoscopus cubla), Southern Boubou (Laniarius ferrugineus), barbets, robins, and thrushes are attracted by the plants' pollinators.
Ribbon bush is fairly drought tolerant but flourishes when watered regularly.
Attracts useful insects
Butterflies and other insects love the nectar-rich flowers.
Colours range from purple with white and dark markings, to mauve, pink and white.
Other uses of Ribbon Bush
Grown for their flowers and foliage.
The crushed leaves can be used as a poultice for sore eyes.
Decorative garden plant and for cut flowers.