These ovoid green Muraltia fruit were photographed in Namaqualand at the end of winter. Sparse leaves, small and oblong, are very common for this genus that has about 14 species in the region, 115 altogether, all occurring in southern Africa.
Muraltia, the purple gorse or in Afrikaans kroesbossie (little frizzled bush), are mainly ericoid shrubs or shrublets, bearing small leaves that are often sharply pointed or spine-tipped, growing in tufts. The plants are sometimes notably sparsely leaved.
The flowers may be purple, pink or white. They have five similar sepals of which two are larger. There are three petals of which one is hooded or keeled with wing-like appendages, the others narrow, an equal pair, free or cohering.
The stamens are seven, the filaments forming a tube, often inflated in its middle. The two-locular ovary has four horns often perpetuated into the fruit, while others have rounded, fleshy fruit as the ones in picture.
Kroesbossie refers to the leaf tufts resembling the hair of Khoi or San people (Manning, 2009; Leistner, (Ed.), 2000).