Bignonia capensis Thunb.
Gelseminum capense (Thunb.) Kuntze
Tecoma shirensis Baker
Tecomaria capensis (Thunb.) Spach
Tecomaria krebsii Klotzsch
Tecomaria petersii Klotzsch
Tecomaria shirensis (Baker) K. Schum.
Cultivated plant in flower
Photograph by: Svetlana Grechkina
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0
Tecoma capensis is an evergreen shrub or tree with a roundish crown - sometimes it develops a more or less climbing habit. It can grow from 0.5 - 10 metres tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of fuel. It is grown as a hedge or screen and is a prized ornamental with a showy and profuse flowering display that attracts birds and insects; it is cultivated in many gardens, parks and arboreta[
East Africa - Tanzania, Mozambique, Swaziland, S. Africa.
Forest margins but more commonly along drainage lines in dense woodland. Grows well in moist
areas and in dry scrub and woodland[
|Other Uses Rating
A plant of the subtropics to the tropics, where it can be found at elevations up to 1,200 metres. It is found in areas where the mean annual rainfall is in the range 750 - 1,750 mm, and the mean annual temperature is within the range 22 - 26°c[
]. Mature plants can tolerate light frosts, quickly recovering from minor damage, but young plants are frost tender and should be protected during its first two cold seasons[
Succeeds in full sun and in semi-shade[
]. Grows in a variety of soils types[
]. Prefers a well-drained, fertile soil with a pH of 5.5 - 6.5[
]. Fairly tolerant of salt-laden winds, it can be grown near the coast[
The plant has been reported to occasionally escape from cultivation and naturalize in tropical America, but this has not been confirmed[
The plant grows fast, usually flowering in the second year[
]. It sometimes flowers all year round[
The plant can be coppiced or pruned in order to maintain its shape and to enhance flowering[
A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if fruit and seed are required[
The powdered bark is used in the treatment of fevers, pneumonia and stomach troubles[
The powdered bark is rubbed on bleeding gums to promote blood clotting[
A leaf decoction is used in the treatment of diarrhoea and for intestinal inflammation. It is believed to ease pain and
The cape honeysuckle is a wonderful hedging plant with good regrowth ability after pruning and normally dense and colourful foliage over a long time[
]. It protects the surrounding soil from erosion, whilst its leaf litter improves soil fertility as it decomposes[
The flowers are a rich source of sugar for bees[
The wood is used for fuel[
Cuttings of young wood.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood.
Layering. The branches often root where they touch the ground[
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