UBC Botanical Garden’s forums have been operating for almost eighteen years. The most frequented part of the forums is the plant identification section, which frequently has worldwide participation in solving these mysteries. Lila Pereszke from Hungary identified the plant in today’s images, which was photographed by the Scotland-dwelling Sheila during her travels to Mauritius!
Cossinia pinnata is one of four species in this genus related to maples and horse-chestnuts. All are woody rainforest species (in Mascarenes, Australia, New Caledonia, or Fiji), with today’s species being endemic to Mascarenes. The species profile on Pl@ntnet for Cossinia pinnata suggests a common name of Bois de judas, but the English variant of Judas wood does not seem to be in use.
More photos by Sheila of this shrub are available to view here: Cossinia pinnata. Plants typically reach 6-8m (20-27 ft.), but plants can occasionally be taller or more tree-like.
In the forums, Sheila posted a number of unidentified cultivated species from her travels to this area. Most (if not all) were determined as native to Mascarenes. It is heartening to know that attempts are being made to conserve the endemic (and threatened) native flora of the archipelago through use in the cultivated landscape.