Erica glauca var. elegans

Thank you to today’s author, Ruth Sanborn, and today’s photographer, J.G. in SF@Flickr (original image via the BPotD Flickr Pool).

Today’s plant is Erica glauca var. elegans and is originally from Western Cape Province, Africa (continuing with the recent theme of African plants). Its common name is Cape heath.

Erica is a large genus of flowering plants containing around 700 species. Most of these 700ish species are endemic to Africa — native to nowhere else in the world. Most species of Erica are small evergreen shrubs that prefer acidic (low pH) soil, and can be called calcifugous (fleeing or seeking refuge from lime-rich, high pH soils). Common names such as heather and heath are generally used to refer to species of Erica, as well as the closely related genus Calluna. Species of Calluna are so similar that they are often confused with Erica species.

For more photographs of Erica glauca var. elegans (and seemingly of this particular plant), see PlantWorld and CalPhotos. Aluka also has some information about an 1847 herbarium voucher of Erica glauca var. elegans.

Erica glauca var. elegans

11 responses to “Erica glauca var. elegans”

  1. George Vaughan

    Absolutely beautiful plant. I would love to have one or more of those in my garden. Thanks for sharing Daniel.

  2. Deborah Lievens

    Thanks, Ruth. Am certainly enjoying the photographic foray into the botany of South Africa. Hope I can get there some day. Love the word “calcifugous”.

  3. Jacqueline


  4. Norm Jensen

    Too cool! I’d never seen even a photo of anything in Erica. That genus is the type for the family Ericaceae, which also includes a host of genera here in the western US, including the rhododendrons and azaleas, heather, wintergreen, and blueberries, not to mention madrone and manzanita!

  5. Eric in SF

    Really great portrait.

  6. Elizabeth

    Looks like a cross between Heather and the seasonally familiar ‘Christmas Cactus’- especially their blooms.

  7. Emily

    This is a stunning photo. Is there a way to obtain the technical information on the image? I went to Flicker, but don’t see that particular image or how to get the info. Or is there a way to email the photographer?

  8. Eric in SF

    Emily – under “Additional Information” on the lower right of the image page you’ll see a small link labeled “More Properties”.

  9. Eric Simpson

    Great pic, J.G.
    Boy, Eric in SF, don’t you agree with me that Eric-aceae is the best family of all?

  10. Eric in SF

    Eric S – My first love is and always will be the Orchidaceae but I have to say there are a plethora of spectacular Ericaceae. My favorite Ericaceous plants are the Neotropical Blueberries and any/all of the Rhododendrons.

  11. Robert Sarkisian

    A beautiful plant and amazing photo.

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