Berzelia lanuginosa

Family:

Bruniaceae

Genus:

Berzelia

Species:

lanuginosa – meaning ‘woolly’

Common name:

Kol-kol

Vulnerability Index Score:

6

2m

June to November

Insects, Seeder

Fresh

Least concern

What does the plant look like?

Berzelia lanuginosa is a shrub with a single stem and long, slender branches. It grows up to two metres tall.The leaves are small and needle-like.

What are the flowers like?

The flower heads are small, lime- green balls.When young, they radiate (or spread out) from the ends of the main branches. As they ripen, the balls change to a maroon-red colour. In full flower the balls are covered with white pollen threads that look like bits of wool.This gives the plant its species name (lanuginosa comes from the Latin word for wool). The plants flower from June to November.

How does it reproduce?

Berzelia lanuginosa is visited by a variety of insect species (generalist insect-pollination system) and regenerates from seed.

Where is it found?

It grows only in the Western Cape, between Clanwilliam and Bredasdorp. It grows on sandy flats and slopes in areas called seepages, where the soil is always moist.

How is it used?

It is mostly used in the fresh flower industry as a green filler.

Conservation

[Red List: Least Concern]

This species is not threatened but the wet habitats where it grows, e.g. stream banks, seepage areas and wetlands, can be threatened by unlawful and damaging agricultural practices like ploughing, trampling (by people or livestock) and draining of wetlands.