Bowiea volubilis (climbing-onion, sea onion) is an interesting long living deciduous, perennial bulb. It is generally considered a succulent in the broad sense. The plants have many overlapping scales, which form tight, pale green, spherical bulbs that grows to 20 cm above the soil and to 25 cm in diameter (could take 70 years). The bulbs send up a twining fresh-green branched stem with few linear deciduous leaves. Dormant in winter, when the outer scales and many of the scale tips dry to a paper-like state, the plants burst to growth in late spring or summer, producing one or more very fast-growing stems that needs to be supported by a trellis or stake. The stems are covered with many leafless side-branches that may fall off. The small greenish-white flowers appear in spring. Two subspecies are recognized, the nominate form and Bowiea volubilis subsp. gariepensis (van Jaarsv.) Bruyns.