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Lobostemon fruticosus

   (Family: Boraginaceae)
Afrikaans: Agtdaegeneesbos, Douwurmbos, Luibos, Lobos English: Pajama bush  EDIT
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Plant Type: EDIT  Shrub
Height: 1m
Special properties:
  Has Medicinal Uses
Rarity Status:
Preferred rainfall: Winter
Preferred position:
Full Sun
Tolerated soil:  
  Sand (coarse texture, drains easily)
Flowering time EDIT
x x             x x x x
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Flower colours
Flower shape
  Flower info
  Flowering is from early spring to summer, turning the grey, inconspicuous bushes into a colourful display with clusters of flowers in delicate shades of pink and blue. The pink bud opens into a bell-shaped flower, of which the inside and back remain pink but the tips of the 5 petals wash into light blue. The flower colour is variable with some plants more blue, others more pink and occasionally white.
Leaf shape EDIT
Leaf arrangement
Leaf texture Hairy
Leaf size 0400mm
  Leaf info EDIT
  Both the stems and leaves are covered in white hairs, giving the shrub a grey appearance. The rough leaves, without stalks, are arranged alternatively around the stems of the younger, upper branches. The narrow, oval-shaped leaves are about 400 mm long with sharp tips that point up and outwards.
Fruit type EDIT
  Seed info EDIT
  The seeds are four little nutlets with spiny tips.
Description EDIT
Small evergreen shrub always attracts admiration with its showy blue and pink flowers.

It grows about 1 m high with numerous, long branches shooting from the base. The older, lower part of the stems get quite woody, whereas the younger tips are much softer with an attractive red colouring.
Growing EDIT
The shrubs are fast growing, reaching flowering size within a year. Over time, plants tend to get very woody and long with less flowers.
Distribution EDIT
Common and often found in groups, along its wide distribution from Namaqualand to the Cape Peninsula and Worcester. These areas, from the northwestern to southwestern Cape, receive winter rain with long, dry summers and very little to no frost. Within this distribution with mainly fynbos vegetation, L. fruticosus favours areas that are in full sun and well drained, from sandy flats to rocky mountain slopes.
History EDIT
Used as a popular old Cape remedy.
Used by the KhoiKhoi, the settlers and Malays, this little shrub was a much respected herb of the Cape people. A tea made of the leaves drunk first thing in the morning, was said to be a sure cure for ringworm in humans and animals-hence the Afrikaans common name, douwurmbos.

An ointment made by frying the leaves and flowers of Lobostemon fruticosus in butter with leaves of Melianthus major, M. comosus and the bulbs of Cyanella lutea was applied to wounds.
Ecology EDIT
The plants re-seed themselves, most prolifically after a fire. Some shrubs may resprout after fire.

Bees, the main pollinators in the garden, frequently visit the flowers.
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