9 Types of Bird of Paradise Varieties (Guide & Tips)

Many of you must know about the bird of paradise, but I’m not just talking about a single bird of paradise. I’m here to introduce some bird of paradise varieties. Trust me, I’ve got some fantastic colors that will make your garden colorful and attractive.

So, what’s your opinion? Let’s try this and take a break from your boring gardening routine. If you’re wondering what types of birds of paradise these are and how you can find them, don’t worry, I’ve made it easy for you.

In this informative guide, I’ve discussed different types of birds of paradise that can add a grand collection to your garden. What are you waiting for let’s continue reading.

Quick takeaways:

  • Though bird of paradise varieties are different species that share a common name.
  • The bird of paradise mainly is a florist’s flower which belongs to the Strelitzia genus.
  • The bird of paradise also has an entirely different genus called Caesalpinia which has a number of broad leaves, evergreen trees, and shrubs that also have the common name called as bird of paradise.
  • Strelitzia reginae is the most common species of the birds of paradise.
  • The birds of paradise can survive anywhere from 50 to 150 years.

Types of Bird of Paradise:

The following are 9 different bird of paradise varieties that are commonly known as bird of paradise:

Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae):

  • These are the varieties that are native to South Africa and are known as the crane flower because of having long leathery leaves which are similar to banana tree leaves.
  • The leaves of Strelitzia reginae are stiff clumps that sprout to a ground-level base and the flower of the plants rests atop consisting of orange sepals and blue petals.
  • These plants have a resemblance to the head and crown of a bird, blooming with growing season about 25 times per year.
USDA Hardiness Zones10-12; often grown as a houseplant
Mature Size40–48 inches
LightFull sun to partial shade
Soil NeedsWell-draining, loamy
9 Types of Bird of Paradise Varieties (Guide & Tips)

Giant Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia nicolai):

  • The Giant Bird of Paradise are varieties that are native to South Africa.
  • They are larger species than the Strelitzia genus having flowers that look similar to traditional birds of paradise plants.
  • These species do have white sepals forming a crown and a bluish-purple tongue.
  • There is a high chance of getting confused with large gray-green leaves that are similar to banana tree leaves. 
USDA Hardiness Zones9–11; often grown best
Mature SizeUp to 20 feet; up to 7 feet 
LightFull sun to partial shade
Soil NeedsWell-drained, moist

Red Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinia pulcherrima):

  • These red bird of paradise varieties are much different than the strelitzia species.
  • The Caesalpinia pulcherrima also known as the red bird of paradise, the pride of Barbados, or the peacock flower is a fast-growing, broad-leaved evergreen shrub native to arid regions of tropical Americas.
  • Red Bird of Paradise blooms repeatedly with red-orange flowers.
  • They are deciduous when grown at the northern end range(zone 9).
  • The prickly stems of the plant can be used as a barrier plant.
  • These Caesalpinia species do have smaller flowers than the Strelitzia bird of paradise plants.
  • The blooming of them resembles azaleas, appearing in clusters.
  • The red bird of paradise plant prefers to grow in a desert-like environment that belongs to the legume or pea family and can be recognized from the shape and arrangement of the leaves.
USDA Hardiness Zones9–11
Mature Size10–20 feet
LightFull sun
Soil NeedsWell-drained, moist

Mexican Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinia mexicana):

  • These are varieties that are related to the red bird of paradise, the Mexican bird of paradise, a native of northern Mexico with flowers that tend to bloom with yellow color.
  • These plants do have cold tolerance than C. pulcherrima which thrive best to 15 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The blooming of the Mexican Bird of Paradise is in clusters of yellow flowers that resemble azaleas, and the leaf shape.
  • The seed pods of the plant make it obvious that they belong to the members of the legume family.
USDA Hardiness Zones8–11
Mature Size10-15 feet
LightFull sun
Soil NeedsYellow Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinia gilliesii)

Yellow Bird of Paradise (Caesalpinia gilliesii):

  • Yellow Bird of Paradise commonly known as Caesalpinia gilliesii, poinsiana, or bird of paradise bush is a shrub-like form of Caesalpinia native to Argentina and Uruguay.
  • They are evergreen when grown in warmer climates having red or yellow azalea-like flowers blooming in July and August.
  • The plant does have fern-like leaves that identify it as a member of the legume family.
  • The seeds of the plant get expelled when the pods of the plant get dry.
  • Although they used to self-seed very easily, they escaped and naturalized into the surrounding areas. 
USDA Hardiness Zones8–11
Mature Size7–10 feet
LightFull sun but tolerates some shade
Soil NeedsWell-drained, tolerates rocky soil

White Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia alba):

  • The White Bird of Paradise is commonly known as Strelitzia alba and is an evergreen perennial.
  • They used to bloom between July and December with sprouts of large white flowers having petals that grow up to 12 inches in length.
USDA Hardiness Zones10-12
Mature Size12-15 feet
LightFull sun to partial shade
Soil NeedsWell-drained

Narrow-leaved Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia juncea):

  • The narrow-leaved bird of paradise is commonly referred to as Strelitzia juncea which is a stunning variety having vibrant flowers with blue and orange hues. 
  • These are plants which grow slowly and do grow upto 3 to 4 years to flowers.
  • They used to bloom from late fall to late spring having low water needs.
USDA Hardiness Zones9-11
Mature Size4-6 feet
LightFull sun, partial shade
Soil NeedsWell-drained

Wild Banana (Strelitzia caudata):

  • The wild banana commonly known as Strelitzia caudata is a herbaceous perennial.
  • These are plants that grow upto the height of 6 feet.
  • The wild banana needs well-draining soil so don’t use soggy soil.
  • It is a plant that blooms in early spring, with showy white petals with tinges of purple.
  • They used to arrive once in the summer.
  • The plant-blooming flowers are later replaced by fruit. 
  • Wild bananas are toxic plants so it’s not best to grow around small children or pets. 
USDA Hardiness Zones10
Mature SizeUp to six feet
LightFull sun
Soil NeedsWell-drained; can’t tolerate soggy conditions

Strelitzia × kewensis:

  • Strelitzia × kewensis is a hybrid species that is created by crossing Strelitzia reginae and Strelitzia alba.
  • It is the first botanical blend first cultivated at Kew in England which got to flower for the first time in 1909.
  • Strelitzia × kewensis used to bloom with pale yellow flowers which make them distinctive from other species. 
  •  You can’t grow them to add beauty to the garden because it has disappeared from cultivation. 

Bird of Paradise Care Tips:

Here are some important tips that you need to learn while growing a bird of paradise:

  1. You need to water the bird of paradise all the time when the soil is 50 percent dry and while watering continue it until the water flows out through the drainage hole present at the bottom of the pot. 
  2. Just pour all the water out that is filled up in the pot’s saucer.
  3. In case of growing them indoors, maintain the humidity and temperature high over 60 degrees Fahrenheit, where you can mist the plant frequently at home whenever you feel dry.
  4. The soil and fertilization used for the growing bird of paradise is based on the type of bird of paradise plant.
  5. The Caesalpinia bird of paradise varieties used to grow well when kept in part shade outdoors where it required as much light as possible while you grow them as houseplants. Placing them near the sunny window is perfect but keep them away from chilly drafts. They grow best at the temperature below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have any possibility of providing them direct sunlight, make sure to provide the plant with artificial light as bright as possible. 
  6. Remember they to Required to mist plants in very dry conditions. 
  7. The Strelitzia bird of paradise varieties used to grow tall about 6 feet in height which makes them best for outdoors growing in bright light and climates that need to be higher humidity than Caesalpinia.

Final Thoughts

Want to make your indoor or outdoor garden into a tropical paradise, then I will suggest planting birds of paradise in which you have different varieties. The above-mentioned bird of paradise varieties fit seamlessly into tropical landscapes that make perfect with the large leafed trend and fill empty spaces in your garden.


What is the main difference between the Mexican bird of paradise and the bird of paradise?

The red bird of paradise is considered the cousin of the Mexican bird of paradise having a longer planting season that blooms from early spring to mid-fall.

Is the Mexican bird of paradise loved by hummingbirds?

Although the bird of paradise is rich in nectar with a unique flower but is not only an attractant for hummingbirds but to most of the other pollinators as well. The origin of the bird of paradise is foggy but the exceptionally Mexican bird of paradise grows well in California.

Which one is the most beautiful bird of paradise?

Talking about Wilson, the bird of paradise Cicinnurus is similar to the two islands of the Raja Ampat island. You can only see the Wilson bird because it only inhabits two islands, i.e. waigeo and Batanta so I will say they are the most colorful birds of paradise.

Is the bird of paradise able to purify the air?

Yes, white colored bird of paradise is used as a natural air purifier. The leaves of this bird of paradise work continuously to absorb indoor pollutants which is like a living, breathing filter. Growing them in your home will help to improve air quality and add an aesthetic value to your home.

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