Leaves succulent, basal, linear, flat or channelled, tapering, base of leaves sheathing and membranous.
Inflorescence a raceme. Tepals almost equal, narrow-elliptic to ovate, free or almost so, yellow with red-brown to brown central stripe, outer whorl slightly darker than inner whorl. Stamens all or inner 3 only with a beard of clavate hairs at apex of filament; anthers usually dorsifixed. Ovules 2–8 per loculus; style simple; stigma entire or 3-lobed.
Capsule globose to broad-obovoid; seeds black, brown or silver-grey, smooth or with transverse ridges, with or without wings.
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Tepals more than 7 mm long; ovules 2–8 per loculus; seeds without wings||2|
|Tepals 4–7 mm long; ovules 1 or 2 per loculus; seeds with or without wings||4|
|2||Scape terete or slightly angled; stamens more or less equal in length; seeds smooth to slightly ridged||3|
|Scape sharply angular; stamens unequal in length, with inner 3 longest; seeds strongly ridged|
Back to 1
|3||Usually with bulb; leaves slightly scabrid; scapes 1 or 2; stamens 8–9 mm long; anthers more or less basifixed; seeds brown to almost black||Bulbine bulbosa|
|Without bulb, sometimes with rhizome; leaves glabrous; scapes 2 or more; stamens 5–8 mm long; anthers apparently dorsifixed; seeds silver-grey with black markings|
Back to 2
|4||Seeds without wings; capsule 2–5 mm long; only 3 longest stamens with hairs at base of anther||Bulbine semibarbata|
|Seeds with wings; capsule 4–9 mm long; all stamens with hairs at base of anther|
Back to 1