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Family name: Amaryllidaceae

Scientific name: Haemanthus albiflos

Authority: Jacq.

Synonyms: Haemanthus albomaculatus Baker, Haemanthus leucanthus Miq.

Zulu names: uzeneke, umathunga, umayime intelezi, ulimi lwenkomo, insulansula yegcaki, indlebelendlovu

Other names: elephant’s tongue, elephant ear, white paint brush

Short description: H. albiflos is an evergreen bulbous geophyte with fleshy drooping leaves, pubescence, white flowers that look like paint brushes, and round fleshy red fruits. The perennial prefers growing in shady places along the coast.


The Zulu name “uzeneke” is derived from “ukuzeneka“, which means to expose to the open air in order to ventilate or dry.

The plant gets the name uzeneke because the leaves are often spread out and exposed to the open air before being use.

Related uses: The small, young leaves are used by women while the fully grown leaves are used by men. The leaves are generally used to treat skin-related conditions and respiratory ailments.

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