Plants of the Week

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E.g., 22/09/2023
E.g., 22/09/2023


Fruit of G.grandiflora. Image:C.Paterson-Jones
Common names: kukumakranka (Eng.); koekoemakranka, bramakranka (Afr.)
Family: Amaryllidaceae

Gethyllis, a genus of the family Amaryllidaceae, has such unusual foliage, flowers and fruits that it ranks as one of the most fascinating groups of bulbous...

19 / 07 / 2004 | D Snijman | Compton Herbarium
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Canthium inerme

Leaves and fruits
Common names: turkey-berry; common turkey-berry; criss-cross turkey-berry; Cape date (Eng.); gewone bokdrol; doringels (Afr.); umvuthwamini (Xhosa, Zulu); umnyushul
Family: Rubiaceae

The ecological and cultural aspects of this tree, its lovely aesthetic qualities and its relatively widespread distribution in southern Africa, make this...

12 / 07 / 2004 | Jan-Hakon Burring | Kirstenbosch NBG
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Raphia australis

Image of Raphia tree
Common names: Kosi palm (Eng. & Afr.); umVuma (Zulu); iMali (Ronga)
Family: Arecaceae

Palms have the largest leaves of all trees, and Raphia has the largest leaves of all palms. One species of these monsters is indigenous to South Africa,...

12 / 07 / 2004 | Hugh Glen | KwaZulu-Natal Herbarium
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Encephalartos inopinus

E. inopinus (female):Photo: Nat Grobbelaar
Common names: Lydenburg cycad
Family: Zamiaceae

This unusual, attractive African cycad (comparable to the Mexican companion Dioon or a Cuban Microcycas) tolerates both sun and frost, making...

12 / 07 / 2004 | T Mukoma | Lowveld NBG
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Hyphaene coriacea

lala palm
Common names: lala palm, ilala palm, gingerbread tree, fan palm (Eng.); lalapalm, palmboom, waaierpalm (Afr.); Lala-Palme (German); Lilala (Swati); Nnala (Tsonga);
Family: Arecaceae

Could large scale exploitation of lala palms make a significant contribution to the economy of northern Zululand? Almost all parts of this very common...

05 / 07 / 2004 | Hugh Glen | KwaZulu-Natal Herbarium
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Euphorbia ingens

E. ingens tree
Common names: common tree Euphorbia (Eng.); naboom, gewone naboom (Afr.); mohlohlokgomo, mokgoto (Northern Sotho); unHlonhlo (Sw); Nkondze, Nkonde (Tswana)
Family: Euphorbiaceae

If you are looking for a low maintenance addition to a rock or suulent garden this large cactus-like tree is ideal. It is well suited to dry areas and...

05 / 07 / 2004 | Lou-nita LeRoux | Lowveld NBG
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Curtisia dentata

Curtisia dentata
Common names: assegai (Eng.); assegaai (Afr.); uSirayi, umGxina (Xhosa); umLahleni (Xhosa, Zulu); uMagunda, uMaginda, umBese, umPhephelelangeni (Zulu); iliNcayi, is
Family: Cornaceae

Curtisia dentata is a handsome, evergreen tree with beautiful foliage that looks good throughout the year. It has great potential as a garden tree, an...

05 / 07 / 2004 | Alice Notten | Kirstenbosch NBG
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Adenium multiflorum

Adenium multiflora
Common names: impala lily, Sabie star, kudu lily (Eng.); impalalelie (Afr.)
Family: Apocynaceae

Adenium multiflorum is the best known of the South African adeniums. It flowers in winter when most of the surrounding vegetation is rather dull by comparison...

28 / 06 / 2004 | Stoffel Petrus Pieter Bester | National Herbarium Pretoria
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Rothmannia capensis

Flower and glossy leaves
Common names: wild gardenia, common Rothmannia (Eng.); wildekatjiepiering (Afr.); modulatshwene (Northern Sotho); mukubudu (Venda); umPhazane-mkhlu (Zulu); iBolo (X
Family: Rubiaceae

Rothmannia capensis is one of the loveliest indigenous trees for the home garden. It attracts birds and it has a non-aggressive root system. ...

28 / 06 / 2004 | J K Baloyi | Pretoria NBG
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Stoebe rosea
Common names: hartebeeskaroobos (Afr.)
Family: Asteraceae

Not everyone will recognize members of this genus as belonging to the Asteraceae. There are no showy ray flowers and the white or pink disc flowers are...

21 / 06 / 2004 | Marinda Koekemoer | National Herbarium Pretoria
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Gasteria croucheri

Gasteria croucheri flowers
Common names: forest gasteria, forest ox-tongue, Natal gasteria (Eng.); bosaalwee, oukossies, Natal beestong (Afr.); impundu, iqhomololo (isiZulu)
Family: Asphodelaceae

Gasteria are popular indoor, succulent, aloe-like plants and are easily grown. They are mainly from South Africa (one species just entering southern...

21 / 06 / 2004 | Ernst van Jaarsveld | Kirstenbosch NBG
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Asystasia gangetica

Growing as a groundcover in sun
Common names: creeping foxglove (Eng.); Isihobo (Zulu)
Family: Acanthaceae

If you have a large expanse that needs covering, try the magic of this African beauty. Creeping foxglove is the most rewarding and friendliest of all the...

21 / 06 / 2004 | E Lithudzha | Pretoria NBG
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Seriphium plumosum

Common names: silver stoebe (Eng.); slangbos, vaalbossie, Khoi-kooigoed (Afr.)
Family: Asteraceae

This intricately branched, heath-like shrublet is well known to hikers who use the plant to make soft mattresses when sleeping outdoors. It might be better...

14 / 06 / 2004 | L Badenhorst | Kirstenbosch NBG
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Gymnosporia harveyana

Fruit and leaves
Common names: black forest spikethorn (Eng.); swartbospendoring (Afr.)
Family: Celastraceae

This is an evergreen, dense, spiny shrub or small tree, with lovely shiny foliage and small white-and-red fruits. It is suitable for small gardens as a...

14 / 06 / 2004 | M Jordan | National Herbarium Pretoria
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Combretum bracteosum

Combretum bracteosum
Common names: hiccough-nut, hiccup nut, hiccough creeper (Eng.); hikklimop (Afr.); uQotha (Xhosa)
Family: Combretaceae

The Combretum bracteosum is unique amongst our bushwillows in that it does not have the characteristic, papery, four-winged fruit which is familiar...

14 / 06 / 2004 | Alice Aubrey | Walter Sisulu NBG
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Rhoicissus tomentosa

Fruits of Rhoicissus tomentosa
Common names: wild grape, bush grape, African grape, forest Grape, monkey rope, wild vine (Eng.); Bosdruif, Wildedruif, Bostou, Bobbejaantou (Afrikaans), isaQoni, i
Family: Vitaceae


07 / 06 / 2004 | Alice Notten | Kirstenbosch NBG
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Pappea capensis

Pappea capensis fruit
Common names: jacket plum, Indaba tree, bushveld cherry (Eng.); doppruim (Afr.); umqhokwane, umvuna, indaba (Zulu); ilitye, umgqalutye (Xhosa); mongatane, mopsinyug
Family: Sapindaceae

The red fruit of this tree is a tasty treat for humans and a firm favourite with birds and animals. A fine oil is extracted from the seeds. The jacket...

07 / 06 / 2004 | Andrew Hankey | Walter Sisulu NBG
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Elaeodendron croceum

Fruit of E. croceum
Common names: saffron; saffron wood, forest saffron (Eng.); saffraan, bossafraan (Afr.)
Family: Celastraceae

Elaeodendron croceum is an attractive, evergreen tree with a neat, upright shape which can with care be cultivated in gardens large and small....

07 / 06 / 2004 | Robert Archer | National Herbarium Pretoria
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Thamnochortus cinereus

Female plant in flower
Common names: silver restio (Eng.); silwerriet (Afr.)
Family: Restionaceae

This is a medium to tall plant, which can be used equally well in a border or as an accent plant. The plants are very decorative with silvery foliage like...

31 / 05 / 2004 | Hanneke Jamieson | Kirstenbosch NBG
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Coleus neochilus

Coleus neochilus
Common names: smelly coleus, blue coleus, lobster flower (Eng.); rotstuinsalie (Afr.)
Family: Lamiaceae

This is a hardy, versatile, aromatic herbaceous perennial, which forms an attractive groundcover even when the plant is not in flower and is suitable both...

31 / 05 / 2004 | T Mukoma | Lowveld NBG
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