This section is from the book "The Botanical Magazine; Or, Flower-Garden Displayed", by William Curtis. Also available from Amazon: The Botanical Magazine; or, Flower-Garden Displayed, Volume I.
Ixia Flexuosa. Bending-Stalked Ixia.
Cor. 6-partita, campanulata, regularis. Stigmata 3.
IXIA flexuosa foliis linearibus, racemo flexuoso multifloro. Linn. Sp. Pl. p. 51. Ait. Hort. Kew. p. 58.
The Ixias are a numerous tribe, chiefly natives of the Cape, and in general remarkable either for their delicacy, or brilliant colours.
The one here figured appears to be a variety of the flexuosa with a purple eye, its blossoms are fragrant, and come forth in April or May.
"All the sorts multiply very fast by offsets, so that when once obtained, there will be no occasion to raise them from seeds: for the roots put out offsets in great plenty, most of which will flower the following season, whereas those from seeds are three or four years before they flower. These plants will not thrive through the winter in the full ground in England, so must be planted in pots, and placed under a frame in winter, where they may be protected from frost, but in mild weather should enjoy the free air; but they must be guarded from mice, who are very fond of these roots, and if not prevented will devour them." Millers Gard. Dict.