Erica vestita, commonly known as trembling heath and in Afrikaans as trilheide (vibrate heath or quiver heath), is an erect, compact shrublet branching from a single basal stem to heights around 1 m.
The longish, thread-like and hairless leaves grow in whorls of six, the backs white from rolled under margins and probably lower surface hairs. Shimmering of the leaves in the breeze brought the plant its common names.
Small flower clusters are formed from single flowers grown from stem-tip leaf axils. The tubular red, pink or white flowers are hairy but not sticky. Two-toned pink and white flowers occur. The slightly curved corolla tubes end in four shallow, rounded lobes curving out. The lobes in picture do not have a different colour, although the tube bases are whitish. Another common name, wide mouth heath, is descriptive of the corolla tips.
The flower tubes are from 16 mm to 24 mm long, about four times the length of the green, hairless, leaf-like calyces.
The stamens lacking tails are concealed in the tube, while the style are sometimes seen. In picture they end in dark stigma knobs.
Flowering lasts all year round.
The species distribution is in the Western Cape on the Langeberg and Riviersonderend Mountains, from near Worcester to George. The photo was taken in the Tradouw Pass.
The habitat is wet as well as arid fynbos on shale slopes. The species is not considered to be threatened in its habitat early in the twenty first century (Vlok and Schutte-Vlok, 2015; Manning, 2009; Mustart, et al, 1997; iNaturalist; http://redlist.sanbi.org).