The genus Strelitzia is one of three genera in the Strelitziaceae (order Zingiberales) and consists of four or five species native to South Africa. Strelitzia reginae (S. reginae) is acaulescent, forming large clumps with many shoots arising from a dichotomously branched rhizome system. A prominent characteristic of the root system is the fleshy storage roots. Seedlings have a distichous phyllotaxy in one plane while adult shoots have a right-handed spirodistichous leaf arrangement. The inflorescence of S. reginae is a long-pedunculate cincinnus enclosed within a large, boat-shaped bract. Strelitzia is a self-inductive plant in which flower initiation occurs under any conditions favoring vegetative growth. Environmental conditions affect flowering in two ways: by determining the rate of flower development, and by determining whether the initiated inflorescence bud will develop to anthesis or degenerate. The evidence points to a high temperature sensitivity during the early stages of flower development.