TROP­I­CAL splen­dour

Th­ese strongly scented plants are a must for the sum­mer gar­den.

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WWith their heav­enly fra­grance and clus­ters of at­trac­tive flow­ers at the tips of the branches, it’s dif­fi­cult to miss frangi­pa­nis in sum­mer! This small tree or large shrub has an um­brella shape with thick, suc­cu­lent-like branches. The most com­mon frangi­pani flow­ers are creamy-white with yel­low cen­tres but there are also va­ri­eties with more yel­low­ish flow­ers, or pink flow­ers with yel­low cen­tres.

Frangi­pa­nis do best in hot, hu­mid re­gions such as KwaZulu-Natal, the Eastern Cape coastal ar­eas and the Lowveld. This shrub will also grow in a drier, cooler re­gion as long as it is frost-free. In ar­eas that re­ceive light frost, it should be planted in the warm­est part of the gar­den in a well­pro­tected spot. Frangi­pa­nis like full sun and fer­tile soil that drains well, but must be pro­tected from wind. Keep them well­wa­tered in sum­mer in win­ter rain­fall ar­eas and in the drier parts of the coun­try. It is not nec­es­sary to prune them.

Frangi­pa­nis make ex­cel­lent cut flow­ers and last well in the vase. Other­wise, float a few blooms in a bowl of wa­ter to cre­ate a trop­i­cal at­mos­phere!

By Marié Ester­huyse • Pho­to­graphs Fran­cois Ober­hol­ster • Styling Melissa Raut­en­bach

Com­mon name Frangi­pani Botan­i­cal name

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