Michael Grünstäudl (Gruenstaeudl), PhD

Postdoctoral Researcher at the Freie Universität Berlin

Texas mountain laurel in the hill country

Mountains in Texas?

Dermatophyllum secundiflorum (Fabaceae), to most Texans commonly known as the ‘Texas mountain laurel’, is a small, evergreen tree that is planted in various regions of Texas and northern Mexico. Its fragrant purple flowers, which are aggregated into long racemes, and its comparatively high drought tolerance make this plant a popular ornamental plant. Springtime visitors of central Texas (e.g., Austin or San Antonio) have certainly seen this plant in and around city parks and near public buildings. While the reddish seeds are highly poisonous, the flowers have a peculiar smell, which (to me) is reminiscent of grape soda.

Michael Gruenstaeudl inspecting a raceme of Dermatophyllum secundiflorum

Michael Gruenstaeudl inspecting a raceme of Dermatophyllum secundiflorum


Close-up of a raceme of Dermatophyllum secundiflorum

Despite having lived in Texas for many years, I have never found out the origin for this plant’s common name. In fact, ‘Texas mountain laurel’ is a rather unusual name for an area such as central Texas, which may be hilly (and, thus, referred to as the ‘Hill country’) but not exactly blessed with many mountains. Nonetheless, Dermatophyllum secundiflorum is a beautiful – and in spring time fragrant – plant.

Der Beitrag wurde am Friday, den 6. May 2022 um 23:24 Uhr von Michael Grünstäudl veröffentlicht und wurde unter Allgemein, audiovisual abgelegt. Sie können die Kommentare zu diesem Eintrag durch den RSS 2.0 Feed verfolgen. Sie können einen Kommentar schreiben, oder einen Trackback auf Ihrer Seite einrichten.

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