The plant acquired its name around 1830 when Ecklon, a botanist and plant collector in South Africa named the genus after Freese, a German physician. It began to be cultivated in various European countries towards the end of the 19th century and continued during the early decades of the 20th century.
The plant’s popularity increased sharply during the second half of the 20th century. Breeding activities expanded and became more professional resulting in the creation of many new, improved varieties which replaced the earlier assortment during the 1970s and ’80s. Work has continued to the present day to further improve the Freesia assortment.
As well as developing the assortment, cultural research has played a major role in contributing to modern day Freesia cultivation. Temperature treatments; use of soil cooling and heating; the introduction of different screen systems and artifical lighting – all have contributed to a spectacular increase in stem production per square meter plus significantly improving the quality of Freesia.