Pelargonium glutinosum, in Afrikaans known as the taaiblaarmalva (sticky leaf pelargonium), is a branching shrub that grows to 1,5 m.
The plant exudes a pungent smell, especially when leaves are touched or crushed; said to be balm-scented. There are glandular hairs on the stems that start off green, becoming brown when older. The stems are initially soft and herbaceous, later becoming woody.
The leaves are sticky, deeply lobed and sparsely toothed, sometimes with quite narrow and acutely angular sections.
P. glutinosum bears small umbels of rose, purple or pale pink flowers on long peduncles above the leaves. The pedicels of individual flowers are short. The sepals are half as long as the petals, oblong in shape and tapering abruptly to small tips. The upper petal pair has line markings with a pale central patch near the base. The lower three petals are elliptic with rounded tips, tapering to the base and unmarked.
The plant blooms in spring, but sporadically at other times, based on conditions.
The distribution ranges from mountains in the Western Cape from Piketberg, the Hex River, the Little Karoo around Montagu and Oudtshoorn to the Eastern Cape around the Kei River. There is another distribution in Limpopo in the Soutpansberg.
The plants usually grow in kloofs where shade and water are commonly found. The species is not considered to be threatened in its habitat early in the twenty first century (Vlok and Schutte-Vlok, 2010; JSTOR; www.plantzafrica.com; http://redlist.sanbi.org).