Common Name: Jacaranda, Blue Jacaranda, Black poui and The fern tree.
Etymology: Jacaranda: Latinised version of local Portuguese (Old Tupi) name for this tree ‘yacaranda’. mimosifolia: Leaves like that look like that of the Genus Mimosa.
Origin: Brazil although it is now naturalized in the warmer parts of Australia, Southern Africa, Hawaii, USA and South America (it is considered an invasive weed in parts of Queensland and South Africa where it shades out native plants).
Description: Deciduous (loosing leaves during dry season) 12-15m tall tree. Usually single trunked with broad dome of curving branches as twiggy canopy.
Foliage: Opposite, bipinate, (300-400mm long) leaflets lanceolate/elliptic, (10-15mm x 3-4mm) bright green turning yellow in late winter and early spring, before falling.
Bark/Trunk: Rough pale grey bark with many small fissures.
Flowers: Campanulate with five lobes at the mouth, (40-50mm long) purple-blue and slightly perfumed, in 200mm long terminal clusters (panicles). Main flowering is mid spring to early summer. Grafton in New South Wales and Applecross (Perth) Western Australia both have Jacaranda festivals during the blooming period of these flowers.
Fruit: The fruit is a brown disc shaped follicle, 50-60mm across that follows flowering. These discs or pods contain numerous flat winged seeds.
Growth Requirements: Sunny position with preferred daytime temperatures between 20-34 degrees Celsius. Will not tolerate frost when young but mature trees will handle small bursts of sub zero (down to -5 degrees Celsius). Prefers free draining sandy loam soils (will not tolerate wet or clay soils) although will handle poor soils, salty winds and is drought tolerant once established.
Uses: Flowering shade tree, street tree, tropical effect tree, colour contrast tree. It should be noted when maintaining Jacarandas that any branch that needs to be removed from tree should be removed completely.Pruning will result in upright unsightly regrowth that will ruin the graceful habit of this tree. Other uses for this tree are for its essence that is believed to turn negative qualities in a person to a positive one and reduce procrastination. The oils from the tree are an effective treatment of venereal diseases that include syphilis and gonorrhea and can also fight against epileptic seizures.
Propagation: Seed, graft or cutting. Seeds will take 7-10 years to flower while grafted plants will flower within 2-3 years.
- Own notes from Tafe.