An interesting group of perennials from South America. Spreading, with twisted stem leaves, on erect stems, topped with funnel-shaped flowers, producing a carnival-like range of colours and markings. Many cultivated forms have been bred, some for cut flowers, some for large flowers on more compact stems. Hardiness will depend on the form, but some protection of the roots may be helpful. We grow most of ours in the dry garden, helping to the keep the plants from growing too quickly and flopping over. They represent the family Alstroemeriaceae, in which resides another South American genus, Bomarea, producing similar flowers, but on long (up to several metres) twining stems!