These flourishing stems of Salsola aphylla covered in their tiny, chubby, green leaves were seen in October near Barrydale. The plant is clearly thriving after a rainy winter that invigorated the Little Karoo vegetation for strong performance in summer.
The white woolly blotches seen here are neither fruit nor flower; they are galls growing on the plant, caused by insects. Flowers of the gannabos are almost invisibly small, while its lobed fruits look more like flowers, but aren’t. So, plants may also hide information, wearing their own versions of dark glasses and camouflage (Vlok and Schutte-Vlok, 2010; iSpot).