SUMMER FEATURE FLOWER: CHINCHERINCHEE
Anyone who is a regular in our store over the warmer months knows that the chincherinchee is one of Victoria’s favourite summer blooms as our flower tables are always overflowing with them!
What we love about them is that they start off as rather modest looking spikes, a bit like asparagus, and blossom into full balls of star-shaped blooms, and as they last for weeks on end they are incredible value for money.
Chincherinchees are a member of the Ornithogalum family with varieties also known as Star of Bethlehem and Arab’s Eye. Local varieties are grown both in the greenhouse and field in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. They are mostly available in white but also in a vibrant orange.
History of Chincherinchees
The odd, often mispronounced, name comes from the South African word for the flower ‘tjenkenrientjee’ which refers to the sound made by stems rubbing together. It is not surprising then, that the blooms originated from the same country before being introduced into Dutch gardens.
How to Care for Chincherinchees
Choose chincherinchees whose small flowers are up to a quarter open avoiding bunches with wilted or dried flowers around the base. Chincherinchees are usually bare of any leaves so the first step is to cut approximately 2cm off the ends of the stems on an angle and immediately plunge into cool water. Recut the stems, change the water and remove any spent blooms from the base every two days.
How to Style Chincherinchees
Because of their structural quality, we love to style chincherinchees en masse in clear glass vessels such as a contemporary elongated tank style and witness their transformation from humble spike to full blown beauty.