Moraea Species One

The genus Moraea can be divided into five groups: Galaxia, Gynandriris, Hexaglottis, Homeria, and Moraea.

Moraea group species A are found on this wiki page.


Moraea index lists all the species in all five groups alphabetically.


The other species in the Moraea group are listed alphabetically on these wiki pages: Moraea group B - Moraea group C-E - Moraea group F - Moraea group G-I - Moraea group J-M - Moraea group N-R - Moraea group S - Moraea group T - Moraea group U-V


Moraea albicuspa occurs in well watered mountain grassland in the southern Drakensberg mountains KwaZulu-Natal where it is usually found among rocks or in thick clumps. It has large cream to white flowers with reduced inner needle-like tepals. Photos 1-2, 4 taken by Cameron McMaster in the Eastern Cape. The first three were taken at Naude's Nek Pass in the Drakensberg and the fourth at Tiffendell. This area is high altitude grassland. The last two were taken at Maclear. The The third one was taken by Mary Sue Ittner and last one is from Bob Rutemoeller.

Moraea albicuspa, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMasterMoraea albicuspa, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMasterMoraea albicuspa, Naude’s Nek, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea albicuspa, Tiffendell, Cameron McMasterMoraea albicuspa, Maclear, Cameron McMasterMoraea albicuspa, Maclear, Bob Rutemoeller

Moraea algoensis is found in the Cape on clay slopes in renosterveld where it blooms in late winter, early spring. It has one long leaf and small violet flowers with white to yellow nectar guides that stay open for several days. It resembles Moraea tripetala but is much smaller. Photos by Mary Sue Ittner of a plant in culitivation and Cameron McMaster of a plant photographed in the Eastern Cape.

Moraea algoensis, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea algoensis, Cameron McMaster

Moraea alpina grows in the high altitude areas of KwaZulu-Natal, Lesotho and Transkei in open rocky sites or low mountain grassland. It has dark blue to violet flowers with yellow-orange nectar guides. Photos taken by Cameron McMaster at Sentinel Peak and Mary Sue Ittner at Naude's Nek in the Drakensberg Mountains.

Moraea alpina, Sentinel Peak, Cameron McMasterMoraea alpina, Sentinel Peak, Cameron McMasterMoraea alpina, Naude's Nek, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea alpina, Naude's Nek, Mary Sue Ittner

Moraea alticola is a plant from the higher parts of the Drakensberg Mountains in South Africa KwaZulu-Natal and also is found in Lesotho. It is a largest, most robust plant in the genus with one solitary leaf and pale-yellow flowers with darker-yellow nectar guides. It is the largest, most robust species in the genus and is also distinctive in the inner cataphyll with forms an extensive pale network around the base of the stem and leaf. The first picture from Bob Rutemoeller shows this species planted in a raised bed and blooming in Harry Hay's gardens in May 2004. The next photos were taken by Rod Saunders and Cameron McMaster in habitat. The last four pictures were taken at Naude's Nek Pass (high altitude grassland). The last one shows the pale network around the stem and leaf.

Moraea alticola, Harry Hay's garden, Bob RutemoellerMoraea alticola, Rod SaundersMoraea alticola, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMasterMoraea alticola, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMasterMoraea alticola, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMasterMoraea alticola, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMaster

Seed on a 1 mm grid, photo by David Pilling.

Moraea alticola seed, David Pilling.

Moraea amissa has pale purple flowers with white and purple nectar guides, and is related to the other "peacock Moraeas" such as M. villosa. It is reportedly one of the rarest plants in the Cape region of South Africa. It has been collected only three times, from a single location, and was once thought to be extinct. It was most recently sighted in 1981 and 2005. We're not aware of any plants of it in cultivation, but an article by the South African National Biodiversity Institute hints that a rescue plan is in development. You can see the article (plus a photo) here.


Moraea anomala is found in the southwestern and western Cape from the Cederberg Mountains to Caledon and Bredasdorp. It grows on mountains and flats, often on clay soils and flowers best after fires. It has a single terete leaf and pale yellow flowers with distinctly yellow nectar guide and non-sticky nodes. Pollen is orange to red. Photos taken by Cameron McMaster in the Overberg.

Moraea anomala, Fairfield, Cameron McMasterMoraea anomala, Napier, Cameron McMaster

Moraea aristata is an endangered species in South Africa where it survives only in a small protected area near Cape Town. It is white with dark blue nectar guides sometimes outlined in another color. It had been an easy plant to grow in Northern California where it multiplied rapidly. Photo 1 was taken by Bob Rutemoeller and photos 2-3 were taken by Mary Sue Ittner. The second shows a number in bloom in March 2005 where there were almost 100 blooms. Photo 3 photo shows the speckled back of the flower. Since that time the population has dwindled. Photos 4-6 were taken by Nhu Nguyen of the same clone as in the first three photos. Photo 6 shows a 'blue trio' of M. aristata, Gladiolus gracilis and Tecophilaea cyanocrocus.

Moraea aristata, Bob RutemoellerMoraea aristata, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea aristata, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea aristata, Nhu NguyenMoraea aristata, Nhu NguyenMoraea aristata, Nhu Nguyen

More photos of this plant. The first was taken by Lee Poulsen in March 2004, and the last two by Arnold Trachtenberg of flowers from BX bulbs donated by Bob Werra and grown under HID lights. Photo 4 by Jacob Uluwehi Knecht shows a macro close-up image of the peacock eye.

Moraea aristata, Lee PoulsenMoraea aristata, Arnold TrachtenbergMoraea aristata, Arnold TrachtenbergMoraea aristata, Jacob Uluwehi Knecht

Moraea atropunctata is found on clay slopes in the southwestern Cape. Peter Goldblatt's book on Moraeas reports that it is known from only a few sites on a single farm. The population is reportedly in decline due to overgrazing and flower-picking. Fortunately, it is fairly easy to grow in cultivation. This one was grown from seed. It is grey-white with dark speckles and is brown on the back. The first two photos were taken by Bob Rutemoeller and the last three photos below by Bob Werra show a group of flowers, a close-up, and the backs.

Moraea atropunctata, Bob RutemoellerMoraea atropunctata, back, Bob RutemoellerMoraea atropunctata, Bob WerraMoraea atropunctata, Bob WerraMoraea atropunctata, Bob Werra

Galaxia - Gynandriris - Hexaglottis - Homeria A-J - Homeria K-Z - Moraea group B - Moraea group C-E - Moraea group F - Moraea group G-I - Moraea group J-M - Moraea group N-R - Moraea group S - Moraea group T - Moraea group U-V - Moraea Hybrids - Moraea index


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Page last modified on March 27, 2014, at 06:30 PM