This small but distinctive genus comprises 5 evergreen, clumping perennials from South Africa. Foliage is large and glossy, resembling that of banana plants from the genus Musa. Large, long-stalked leaves form a "trunk" that can grow up to 10m tall. Inflorescences consist of horizontal, boat-shaped spathes, from which colourful, crest-like flowers arise sequentially. These plants are commonly grown as ornamental houseplants, and are particularly long-lasting when cut. Perhaps the most well-known species is S. reginae known as the Crane Flower. The seeds are toxic to dogs.