Nymania capensis

Botanical name

Nymania capensis

Other names

Chinese lanterns; Klapperbos (Afrikaans)

Family

Meliaceae

Dimensions

An erect, evergreen shrub or small tree, usually around 3 m in height, but occasionally up to double that

Description of stem

Often multistemmed, older ones grey, younger ones light brown

Description of leaves

Simple, narrowly lanceolate, clustered or fascicled around the twig ends, otherwise alternate; green and leathery; petiole 2 mm, base tapering, apex rounded, margin entire

Description of flowers

The single axillary flowers are red or pink, tubular to bell-shaped, the floral parts occur in fours; they appear in winter

Desciption of seed/fruit

Puffed-up or balloon-like, papery seed capsules in four segments; strikingly colourful in cream, light rose to deep pink with a course texture; more flowery than the flowers; appear square from the top or bottom, round from the side; through spring and summer; the seeds are brown, pea-shaped

Description of roots

 

Variation

Specimens from the Richtersveld are said to have brighter red flowers

Propagation and cultivation

Grows easily from seed, not from cuttings; does not survive much watering or high rainfall; take care upon transplantation of young plants not to upset the roots in any way

Tolerances

Very drought resistant, somewhat frost resistant

Uses

Attractive garden plant, but not common due to difficulties in achieving its survival in varying habitats

Ecological rarity

 

Pests and diseases

 

Other

 

Location

Arid, stony scrub-veld in mainly (low) winter rainfall areas

Distribution (SA provinces)

Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Northern Cape

Country

South Africa, Namibia

Category: Trees
Hits: 6589

Article Index

5

2

9

3

10

4

Trees

Botanical Gardens