Haemanthus pumilio is but one of the beautiful flowers of the Western Cape under threat of extinction. It has been said that one in four of fynbos plant species is under threat to some extent.
H. pumilio is a deciduous perennial bulbous plant, a geophyte growing in only a few remaining spots where the renosterveld has not been destroyed. The habitat is wet sandy flats near Stellenbosch and close to the mountains to the north as far as the Elandsberg. The flowers are usually seen after veld fires.
The plants are visited by ants, bees and butterflies (Bond and Goldblatt, 1984; Bean and Johns, 2005).