Moraea

Moraea is a huge genus in the Iridaceae family. Most of the 220-plus species of Moraea are found in sub-Saharan Africa, with more than 120 species native to the Cape Floral Province of South Africa. Some Moraea species grow in the summer, but most are winter-growing, and many have purple or yellow flowers that look like miniature beardless irises. Some Moraea species are known as "Peacock flowers" because they have very brightly colored flowers with contrasting centers.

In 1998, Moraea was merged by taxonomists with several other genera. Major groupings within the merged genus include:

To help growers cope with the changes, we created separate pages for each subgroup, and listed the species whose names were changed under their new names along with their old names. In 2013, based on molecular studies the genus was reorganized again into 11 subgenera. We have not yet restructured the Moraea part of the wiki to take into account that new organization, but you can see the paper on it here, and a summary of the taxonomy here. More information can be learned from Peter Goldblatt's book on Moraeas and Manning, Goldblatt, Snijman, 2002.

These photos illustrate species in the Galaxia, Gynandriris, Hexaglottis, and Homeria subgroups.

Galaxia subgroup, Moraea galaxia, Alan HorstmannGalaxia subgroup, Moraea melanops, Cameron McMasterGynandriris subgroup, Moraea pritzeliana, Bob WerraHexaglottis subgroup, Moraea nana, Bob RutemoellerHomeria subgroup, Moraea ochroleuca, Alan HorstmannHomeria subgroup, Moraea vallisbelli, Mary Sue Ittner

These photos illustrate species in the Moraea subgroup.

Moraea grandis, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea neglecta, Cameron McMasterMoraea lurida, Cameron McMasterMoraea villosa, Mary Sue IttnerMoraea polystachya, Bob RutemoellerMoraea thomasiae, Bob Werra

To grow Moraea from seeds, sow them in a well drained mix and allow the plants to have temperature fluctuations of warm days and cool nights. Plant winter-growing species in fall, and summer-growing species in spring. Most species will tolerate light frost but not extended freezes. Depending on the species, germination can happen within three weeks or take as long as three years (Dell Sherk). Most species take three years to go from seed to flower, but Moraea polystachya and Moraea villosa were reported to flower in 1-2 years (Mary Sue Ittner). Will Ashburner recorded germination and flowering time of 12 species where the first number is weeks to germination and the second is weeks to flowering. Moraea alticola (10, 118), Moraea bellendenii (5, 130), Moraea bubalina (5, 136), Moraea insolens (5, 129), Moraea macronyx (5, 120), Moraea moggii (29, 136), Moraea ramosissima (6, 130), Moraea serpentina (3, 130), Moraea spathulata (6, 135), Moraea thomsonii (6, 128), Moraea tricuspidata (5, 126), Moraea tripetala (3, 121-124).

You can find information on pollinating Moraea flowers here.


Bob Werra gave a talk at the 2006 Indigenous Bulb Association of South Africa's symposium. The title of his talk was Mad about Moraeas. He discussed his experience growing this genus in Ukiah, California and passed out a sheet summarizing his experiences and rating the ones he grows. He has kindly allowed this summary to be added to the wiki.


More information about specific species can be found by accessing the wiki pages listed below or by clicking on the links for the species in the table.
Galaxia - Gynandriris - Hexaglottis - Homeria a-j - Homeria k-z - Moraea group a - 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 species
Moraea albicuspa, Naude’s Nek, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea albicuspa
Moraea albiflora, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea albiflora
Moraea algoensis, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea algoensis
Moraea alpina, Naude's Nek, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea alpina
Moraea alticola, Harry Hay's garden, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea alticola
Moraea amabilis, Middelpos, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea amabilis
Moraea amissa, Andre Venter, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea amissa
Moraea angulata, carinalochner, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea angulata
Moraea angusta, janeennichols, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea angusta
Moraea anomala, Fairfield, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea anomala
Moraea aristata, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea aristata
Moraea atropunctata, Dirk Wallace [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea atropunctata
Moraea australis, iNaturalist, Adriaan Grobler, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea australis
Moraea barkerae, Nick Helme [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea barkerae
Moraea barnardiella, Rod Saunders [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea barnardiella
Moraea barnardii, Bob Werra [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea barnardii
Moraea bellendenii, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bellendenii
Moraea bifida, Charles Stirton, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bifida
Moraea bipartita, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bipartita
Moraea bituminosa, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bituminosa
Moraea bolusii, Namaqualand, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bolusii
Moraea brevistyla, Sentinel Peak, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea brevistyla
Moraea britteniae, Buffelsnek State Forest, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea britteniae
Moraea bubalina, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bubalina
Moraea bulbillifera ssp. bulbillifera, Ed Elton, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea bulbillifera
Moraea caeca, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea caeca
Moraea calcicola, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea calcicola
Moraea cantharophila, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea cantharophila
Moraea cedarmontana, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea cedarmontana
Moraea ciliata, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea ciliata
Moraea citrina, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea citrina
Moraea collina, Dirk Wallace [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea collina
Moraea comptonii, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea comptonii
Moraea contorta, Mark Mazer [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea contorta
Moraea cookii, Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea cookii
Moraea cooperi, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea cooperi
Moraea crispa, Roggeveld Mountains, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea crispa
Moraea cuspidata, Dave U, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea cuspidata
Moraea debilis, Ray Mills [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea debilis
Moraea decipiens
Moraea deltoidea Moraea doleritica drawing, John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea doleritica
Moraea dracomontana, Brendan Cole, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC-ND [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea dracomontana
Moraea eburnea Moraea elegans, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea elegans
Moraea elliotii, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea elliotii
Moraea elsiae, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea elsiae
Moraea exiliflora, J and A Vlok [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea exiliflora
Moraea falcifolia, Rod Saunders [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea falcifolia
Moraea fenestrata, Tony Rebelo, iNaturalist, CC BY-SA [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea fenestrata
Moraea fergusoniae, Bob Werra [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea fergusoniae
Moraea filamentosa Moraea filicaulis, Namaqualand, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea filicaulis
Moraea flaccida, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea flaccida
Moraea flavescens, Richard Adcock, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea flavescens
Moraea fugasissima, Kamieskroon, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea fugacissima
Moraea fugax, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea fugax
Moraea galaxia, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea galaxia
Moraea gawleri, Nieuwoudtville, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea gawleri
Moraea gigandra, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea gigandra
Moraea gracilenta, Gregory Nicolson,iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea gracilenta
Moraea graminicola, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea graminicola
Moraea grandis, Nieuwoudtville, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea grandis
Moraea hainebachiana drawing by artist John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea hainebachiana
Moraea helmei, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea helmei
Moraea herrei, Rod Saunders [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea herrei
Moraea hiemalis, Rogan Roth [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea hiemalis
Moraea huttonii, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea huttonii
Moraea hybrid, Homeria subgroup, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea hybrids - Homeria group
Moraea MM 03-05a (aristata X MM 99-00 (atropunctata? × neopavonia), Michael Mace [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea hybrids - Moraea group
Moraea inclinata, Satansnek, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea inclinata
Moraea inconspicua, Napier, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea inconspicua
Moraea incurva, Chris Vynbos, iNaturalist, CC BY-SA [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea incurva
Moraea insolens, Rod Saunders [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea insolens
Moraea intermedia, Namaqualand, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea intermedia
Moraea karroica, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea karroica
Moraea lazulina drawing by artist John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea lazulina
Moraea lewisiae, Overberg, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea lewisiae
Moraea lilacina, Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea lilacina
Moraea longiaristata, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea longiaristata
Moraea longifolia Moraea longistyla, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea longistyla
Moraea loubseri, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea loubseri
Moraea lugubris, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea lugubris
Moraea lurida, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea lurida
Moraea luteoalba, Craig Peter, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea luteoalba
Eugene Marinus, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea macgregorii
Moraea macrocarpa, Campbell Fleming, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea macrocarpa
Moraea macronyx, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea macronyx
Moraea marionae
Moraea marlothii, Oorlogskloof Nature Reserve, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea marlothii
Moraea mediterranea, Oron Peri [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea mediterranea
Moraea melanops, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea melanops
Moraea miniata, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea miniata
Moraea modesta, Tiffindell, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea modesta
Moraea muddii, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea muddii
Moraea mutila, Jacques van der Merwe, iNaturalist, CC BY-SA [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea mutila
Hexaglottis subgroup, Moraea nana, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea nana
Moraea natalensis, Audrey Cain [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea natalensis
Moraea neglecta, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea neglecta
Moraea neopavonia, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea neopavonia *
Homeria subgroup, Moraea ochroleuca, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea ochroleuca
Moraea ogamana drawing by artist John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea ogamana
Moraea pallida, Jane Trembath, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pallida
Moraea papilionacea, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea papilionacea
Moraea pendula, 24th April 2014, David Pilling [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pendula
Moraea petricola, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea petricola
Moraea pilifolia, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pilifolia
Moraea polyanthos, Jan and Anne Lise Schutte-Vlok [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea polyanthos
Moraea polystachya, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea polystachya
Moraea pritzeliana, Nieuwoudtville, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pritzeliana
Moraea pseudospicata, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pseudospicata
Moraea pubiflora, Robert Archer, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pubiflora
Moraea pyrophila, Maarten Groos [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea pyrophila
Moraea radians, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea radians
Moraea ramosissima flower, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea ramosissima
Moraea reflexa, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea reflexa
Moraea regalis, J and A Vlok [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea regalis
Moraea reticulata, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea reticulata
Moraea riparia
Moraea rivulicola Moraea saxicola, northwest of Steinkopf, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea saxicola
Moraea schlechteri, Namaqualand, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea schlechteri
Moraea serpentina, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea serpentina
Moraea setifolia, Bredasdorp,  Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea setifolia
Moraea simulans, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea simulans
Moraea singularis drawing by artist John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea singularis
Moraea sisyrinchium, Uluwehi Knecht [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea sisyrinchium
Moraea spathulata, Assegaaibos, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea spathulata
Moraea speciosa, Alan Horstmann [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea speciosa
Moraea striata drawing by artist John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea striata
Moraea stricta, Magalisberg, Andrew Harvie [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea stricta
Moraea thermarum drawing, John Manning [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea thermarum
Moraea thomasiae, Bob Werra [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea thomasiae
Moraea tortilis, Alan Horstmann, Namaqualand [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea tortilis
Moraea tricolor, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea tricolor
Moraea tricuspidata, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea tricuspidata
Moraea trifida, Sentinel Peak, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea trifida
Moraea tripetala, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea tripetala
Moraea tulbaghensis, Bob Werra [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea tulbaghensis
Moraea umbellata, Ceres, Margaret Fox [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea umbellata
Moraea unguiculata, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea unguiculata
Homeria subgroup, Moraea vallisbelli, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea vallisbelli
Moraea variabilis, Margaret Fox,iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea variabilis
Moraea vegeta, Lion’s Head, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea vegeta
Moraea versicolor, Rachel Saunders [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea versicolor
Moraea vespertina, Dirk Wallace [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea vespertina
Moraea vigilans, Sentinel Peak, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea vigilans
Moraea villosa, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea villosa
Moraea virgata, Fairfield, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea virgata
Moraea viscaria, Felix Riegel, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea viscaria
Moraea vuvuzela, Charles Stirton, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea vuvuzela
Moraea worcesterensis, Nick Helme, iNaturalist, CC BY-NC [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea worcesterensis
Moraea 'Zoe', Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea 'Zoe'
* = synonym

Galaxia - Gynandriris - Hexaglottis - Homeria a-j - Homeria k-z - Moraea group a - 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


Return to the PBS wiki Photographs And Information page
Page last modified on May 25, 2020, at 12:22 PM