Herb: Baboon Root

Latin name: Babiana plicata

Synonyms: Babiana caerulescens, Babiana reflexa

Family: Iridaceae (Iris Family)

Edible parts of Baboon Root:

Corm - boiled. It is 2 - 3cm in diameter.

Description of the plant:


15 cm
(6 inches)

May to


Habitat of the herb:

Sandy soils on flat land and mountain sides.

Propagation of Baboon Root:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cool greenhouse, it will germinate in the spring. The seed can also be sown in a warm greenhouse at most times of the year. It usually germinates within 4 - 8 weeks at 20C. Give young seedlings as much light as possible. Sow the seed thinly so that it does not need to be thinned and grow the young plants on for their first year without disturbance. Give an occasional liquid feed to ensure that they do not become nutrient deficient. Pot the small bulbs up when they are dormant, placing 2 - 3 bulbs in each pot, and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least the next year. Plant them out into their permanent positions when the plants are dormant in the autumn. Division of offsets when the plant is dormant in the autumn. They are freely produced. The offsets can be planted direct into their permanent positions if required.

Cultivation of the herb:

Sandy soils on flat land and mountain sides.

Medicinal use of Baboon Root:

None known

Known hazards of Babiana plicata:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.