My late mother had a beautiful Keurboom (Virgilia divaricata) growing in her Lydenburg garden in Mpumalanga and delighted in it both for the shade it provided and its wonderful show of flowers.
The one we planted in our present garden has not done well at all. Despite these small to medium-sized trees being endemic to the Western Cape, Southern Cape and Eastern Cape, and found along forest margins, I think ours has battled to ‘find its feet’ in our hard clay soil and to find enough light as the other trees we planted soon after our arrival have matured to provide more shade.
It is therefore a delight to find several Virgilia trees in full bloom along the dirt road I travel along several times a week. The beautiful, sweetly scented, sweet-pea-like flowers of the Keurboom usually appear from about August until November.
Judging by the profusion of blossoms on the trees at present, I suspect we will be able to enjoy them well into December this year.
They are meant to be fast growing (not in my garden!) evergreen trees which, when flowering, attract a variety of insects and birds. My rather old cell phone has not done justice to these lovely flowers – I shall have to revisit the trees sometime with my camera in hand!