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What is this Cape Verde plant please?

Can anyone identify this plant that we saw growing profusely in the grounds of our hotel at Sal, one of the Cape Verde islands.  There appeared to be two versions; yellow flowers with red stamens and red/red.imageimage



  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053

    Could it be a mimosa? The leaves look similar to that. 

    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 36,196

    It is Caesalpinia pulcherrima rowlsteve.

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • Thanks Ladybird4, that is clearly the one!  I have looked it up on Wikepedia.  I'm just wondering if it will survive in the UK (midlands) climate.  Apparently it will withstand light to moderate freezing, but that's maybe not tough enough for the UK?   

  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 36,196

    I would think it would not do too well here unless you had a very sheltered garden and could rush out with the fleece if a hard frost is forecast. I think for plants like these it is more the long periods of wet combined with the cold that we get in the UK that sees them off.

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • I go on holiday to Sal in the Cape Verde islands and have also noticed the shrub in your second image.  I'm 99% sure that it's an acacia but I don't know which variety. Every time I visit this hotel, I admire this shrub. Another characteristic are the seed pods which appear to be the same as those of the acacia.

  • Aster2Aster2 Posts: 629

    I don't think it's an acacia. The leaves do look like one, but not the flowers. Something like Delonix regia?

  • Aster2Aster2 Posts: 629

    This site says they tolerate temperatures down to -7 C:

  • floraliesfloralies Posts: 2,313

    I am sure the second one is a Bird of Paradise tree - Caesalpinia gilliessii. My neighbour tried to grow one down here in SW France, but it died the first winter, but then she did plant it in a north facing spot! I think the first picture is also of the same family. Beautiful flowers but I don't think you would have much luck with it outside in the UK.

  • Thankyou floralies. Looking at it on the RHS site, I would say that it is a Bird of Paradise tree.  I have a few seeds which I'm going to try . I live in the South East and with a sheltered position, I may be lucky enough to succeed. I will also try  growing them in the greenhouse.

  • Looking at the pictures again, it could be that the first image is Caesalpinia Mexicana (Mexican Bird of Paradise)

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