The Strelitzia , commonly known as the Bird of Paradise Plant, is the spectacular, unmistakable and unchallenged Queen of the houseplant world. One look at it when it's in flower and you know where it got its common name; the flowers look incredibly like the head of a rather exotic crested bird.
They are a genus of five species of perennial plants, native to South Africa. It belongs to the plant family Strelitziaceae . The genus is named after the duchy of Mecklenburg-Strelitz , birthplace of Queen Charlotte of the United Kingdom. The Strelitzia is one of the best known of all the tropical flowers and is a cousin to the banana. Surprisingly, the bird of paradise is easier to grow than many tropical plants and makes for a vigorous, rapidly growing indoor plant. Some species of Strelitzia can grow to 32 ft. (10 m) tall. However, the varieties that grow well indoors are shorter, reaching six or seven feet (1.8 – 2.1 m). The long straight stems have large leaves similar to banana tree leaves which are between 3.5” and 78” (30 – 200 cm) long. Yellow Bird of Paradise Orange Bird of Paradise White Bird of Paradise