TREE LIFE

June 2007

 

MASHONALAND CALENDAR

Saturday 2nd June 2007: Botanic Garden Walk No walk this month.

Sunday, June 17th: Ngomakurira in the Chinhamora Communal Land.  It has been many years since we last visited Ngomakurira. In many ways it is a grander version of Domboshawa with similar interesting and unusual vegetation.

We understand that parking is available at the base of the mountain and that there will be a fee. The amount is not known – so come prepared!

We will meet at 9.30 a.m. Please bring lunch and a chair.

Saturday, June 23rd: a second visit to Art Farm.

We first visited this farm in 2006 and saw quite a number of interesting plants. This is an opportunity to return and explore the area at a different time of the year.

Meeting time: 2.30 p.m.

EDITOR’S NOTE
A short Tree Life this month, caused not so much by a lack of suitable subjects, but more by a lack of time on the editor’s part to write about them.
We intend to revert to a more normal size for the July edition.
Mark Hyde

LAST SUBSCRIPTION REMINDER FOR 2007/8

This is a final reminder that subscriptions were due on 1 April 2007. Those that haven’t paid by the end of this month will not receive the July Tree Life.

Email Z$ 5,000
Printed copy: collected Z$ 15,000
Printed copy: posted Z$ 25,000

We would very much prefer to receive the subscriptions in cash.
However, if paying by cheque, please make it out to CABS and on the reverse ‘Pay to the account of the Tree Society’
-Mark Hyde

MATABELELAND CALENDAR

Please contact Jean Wiley or Gill Short for details of the next Matabeleland function.

AMARILLO, MOUNT HAMPDEN 18 MARCH 2007

A new venue for the Tree Society, thanks to John Rourke, at Amarillo on the slopes of Mount Hampden just north of Harare.  The vegetation had grown up considerably since the visit in January and some of the landmarks in the instructions were not easy to find. Luckily for me, Maureen, who knew the way, came past and showed me the turn off and I think everyone else found the place eventually.

Amarillo is a gem; a marvelous get-away close to Harare. The morning’s walk was around the ‘built-up’ part. Although quite a small area, we nevertheless managed to find a fair number of species. The altitude, incidentally, was quite high, 1570 m.

Philenoptera violacea. Photo: Bart Wurten. Source: Flora of Zimbabwe

Philenoptera violacea. Photo: Bart Wurten. Source: Flora of Zimbabwe

The first few trees had been planted and here was the Rain tree, Philenoptera violacea (formerly known as Lonchocarpus capassa). This tree has, like most legumes, compound leaves; in this case imparipinnate. However, unlike most of the other legume trees in the Papilionoideae, the leaflets are opposite each other on the leaf rhachis. There are also small ‘stipels’ at the base of each leaflet; these are like second-order stipules, occurring with the leaflets as opposed to the leaves in the case of stipules.
We don’t often encounter this species near to Harare – it needs slightly lower  altitudes.

The ‘Mount’ was high enough and rocky enough for us to be among the Mountain acacias, Brachystegia glaucescens. Another species typical of rocky places was Tapiphyllum velutinum with its thickly-textured greyish leaves and very noticeable red underbark.

Tapiphyllum velutinum. Photo: Bart Wursten. Source: Flora of Zimbabwe .

Tapiphyllum velutinum. Photo: Bart Wursten. Source: Flora of Zimbabwe
.

Amongst the herbs was the striking orange daisy, Hypericophyllum compositarum, with its opposite leaves. Another lovely species is Pseudarthria hookeri – with its inflorescences of small pink pea flowers.

It was a hot day and we were all quite glad to return to the cars for lunch.In the afternoon a smaller group descended by the entrance road and explored the woodland by the roadside. Another rocky species seen here was the Granite garcinia, Garcinia buchananii. The slightly herb, Elephantopus scaber was also common.
All in all, an enjoyable day.

Mark Hyde  Chairman

 

 

Adansonia digitata: Photo: Bart Wursten. Source: Flora of ZimbabweOchna schweinfurthiana. Photo; Mike Bingham. Source: Flora of Zimbabwe