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Sun Star Plant Care (Ornithogalum Dubium)

Updated: December 30, 2022

When your backyard cries out for beautiful exotic color, the orange yellowish sun star plant is more than perfect for the job. The Sun Star plant is a popular perennial bulb plant that grows into the bright bloom of gorgeous tangerine-colored flowers. It also features dark green leaves that are also beautiful.

The plant is a species from the Asparagaceae family native to Cape Town in South Africa.  Here is an exclusive look at what you need to know about Sun Star plant care guides.

Does The Sun Star Plant Have Any Other Names?

The Sun Star is scientifically known as the Ornithogalum dubium. The plant is also commonly known as the Orange Star plant, Star of Bethlehem, everlasting orange and yellow chincherinchee. The names are given to them due to their beautiful star-like appearance and orange flower petals.

Different Types of Sun Star Plants

Sun star plants belong to the genus Ornithogalum which has more than 120 different species. Some of the common types of sun star plants include;

  • Ornithogalum dubium
  • Ornithogalum Umbellatum
  • Ornithogalum arabicum
  • Ornithogalum nutans
  • Ornithogalum thyrsoides

Main Uses of The Orange Star Plant

The Orange Star plants are a beautiful flowering plant species. The small-sized shrub flowering shrub is the best selection for indoor decoration. Its flowers will add a pleasant and lovely fragrance to the environment, both indoors and outdoors. The plant even won the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit. They are purely ornamental and kept for their gorgeous orange flowers.

How to Prune Sun Star Plants

Pruning the sun star plants is easy. You should trim all the brown leaves and die-back flowers that have begun turning brown from the tip as they won’t bloom again. Pruning is effective in reviving the plant growth again. More so, if you notice that any plant is getting diseased, you should remove those leaves quickly.

It is a low maintenance plant that can grow indoors and outdoors.

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Best Soil for Sun Star Plants

The sun star plants require a well-drained soil that is porous and enables the excess water to move out quickly. They can grow in loamy, sandy, alkaline, or acidic soils. However, they thrive best in neutral pH. The best porous soil to grow your sun star plant consists of sand, coco peat, perlite, garden soil, compost, plant fertilizers, and pumice. These ingredients make the soil porous while also providing essential nutrients for growth. You can also add mulching on top to preserve soil moisture.

How Much Light Do sun star Plants Need?

The sun star plant does best in bright indirect light while blooming. If you keep the sun star plant on a desk or indoors with no bright indirect light, you should consider keeping it under the fluorescent lighting.

How Often to Water Sun Star Plants

Sun star thrives well in moist soil but tolerates relatively dry soil much better than wet soil. One inch of weekly water is ideal when it is actively growing. Water it just when the rainfall is not sufficient. Water slowly while allowing the soil to absorb the moisture.

Ideal Temperature Conditions for Sun Star Plants

The Sun Star plant does not do well in a cold climate. They require a relatively warm environment. They best thrive in temperatures between 16° to 27°C. Temperatures below 16° Celsius are not ideal for their growth.

Humidity Conditions for Sun Star Plants

The Orange Star plant requires a relatively high humidity level of about forty. You can also maintain a high humidity level by misting the plant with a spray bottle once per day during the fall and summer. You can also place the pot on a container tray covered with water and pebbles.

Best Fertilizer for Sun Star Plants

Fertilizer is essential for the proper growth of your Sun Star plant. It helps to retain their flowers, bloom, and enhance the development of the plant. A balanced 20-20-20 fertilizer water-soluble fertilizer is the best fertilizer for sun star plants. Wait for the plant to grow to a significant height and then spread the fertilizer around the plant’s stems. Water the fertilizers to dissolve afterward. You can also prepare a mixture of plant fertilizer with water and water the plants about once every month. The best time to fertilize the plants is during spring and summer, when they have active growth.

How to Propagate Sun Star Plants

There are two ways of propagating the sun star plants. You can propagate the plants using their seeds or splitting their offset.


When the flower blooms for several weeks, it will begin to fade at the end of the fall. When the flower seeds start to ripen, collect them, spray some water, and put them in tissue paper. After one to two weeks, the seeds will begin to develop and break the cover. Put them in potting soil with a spacing of two inches between them. Place some gravel on the top to facilitate moisture retention and building its roots. After leaves start to come out, move it to an area with sunlight and repot it in a larger pot if necessary.


The ideal time to cut offsets is in fall or summer when the leaf tips get pale. Cut the healthy offset using a sterilized cutting tool. Plant the cuttings in a pot with well-drained soil and drainage holes.

Growth Rate of Sun Star Plants

The Sun Star plants have a moderate to fast growth rate when provided with the ideal growth conditions. The plant grows to 17 to 20 inches. It takes a bulb-like shape and grows in a group of six to twenty-five orange or yellowish flowers.

Ideal Pot Size for Sun Star Plants

The best pot size to plant your Sun Star plants is one that is large enough to accommodate the roots of your Sun Star plant. To avoid the roots from outgrowing the pot, repotting your pant in a bigger pot is essential.

Repotting Tips for Sun Star Plants

Repotting the sun star plant is essential when the pot has no sufficient space for the roots to grow. You can know the right time for repotting when the plant starts fading due to the lack of enough room for the roots to spread. Give it more extra water, and don’t put fertilizer until the plant fully adjusts to the new soil and pot. Usually, the Sun Star plant should be reported to a bigger container every one to two years.


Are Sun Star Plants Edible?

No! The Sun Star plants are not edible. The flowers and builds contain a toxic ingredient that can cause adverse side effects when ingested.

Are Sun Star Plants Toxic to Cats and Dogs?

Yes! Sun star plants are toxic because of their glycosides component. A cattle in South Africa became blind and died after ingesting the sun star bulbs. So, it’s recommendable to keep the plants out of reach from pets like cats, dogs, and children.

Is The Sun Star Plants Poisonous?

According to scientific research, ingesting the Sun Star plant flowers or bulbs can cause shortness of breath. The bulbs are poisonous as they contain glycosides, which are dangerous toxins.


The Sun Star plant is natural-looking and beautiful. It has very bright foliage that attracts attention even for people going in the opposite direction. Even better, the plant is very easy to maintain and care for. Therefore, if you are searching for pure beauty to grow in the garden or a pot, the sun star is a perfect option.