Jacaranda time

It’s spring in northern New South Wales.

In this sub-tropical climate, that means new leaves, green grass and above all, flowering trees. Our route southwards has been decorated with blossom, most notably the spectacular orange blossoms of Grevillea robusta, the Silkoak tree, and the gorgeous misty purple of the Jacarandas.

Yesterday we passed through Grafton, the Jacaranda Capital of Australia, and home of the annual Jacaranda Festival. Sadly, we’re going to miss the event itself as we’ll be virtually home again by then, but the trees are already in spectacular bloom throughout the city. It was pouring with rain as we passed through, so all my photos are taken through the car windscreen, but I think you’ll get the idea anyway!

We’ve travelled something over 1400km (870 miles) since Sunday, with still a way to go. It has been wet every day of our trip so far, so I have no spectacular views to show you; the landscape has been shrouded in mist and cloud, or dense rain all the way. I’m carrying my camera with me, so if an opportunity to capture something does arise, I’ll be ready, but it’s not looking too hopeful!

I’m hoping for a few dry spells at some stage, but given the forecast this may be too much to hope for :-/  It’s going to be a soggy old camping trip…


52 thoughts on “Jacaranda time

  1. jmcheney says:

    One of my favorite trees in the world. We lived right across the street from a magnificent specimen in the Delray Beach, Fla. Episopal Church playground, where my son attended kindergarten & played under it with its falling blossoms. I painted it once & will all remember it. I love your through the windshield photos. Keep dry & have fun.

    • katechiconi says:

      So far so good! We’ve seen some lovely combinations with jacarandas: a brilliant scarlet flame tree growing side by side with one, and also a hot pink bougainvillea, a really eye-catching combination!

  2. Oh my gosh, it’s more than spectacular. It’s magical!

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s not quite real-looking, is it? Like one of those sentimental chocolate box illustrations. The whole city’s residential streets are lined with them, so everywhere you turn there’s a purple and green vista 🙂

  3. kathyreeves says:

    That looks like a fairy land!

  4. Lynda says:

    As I remember from my plant nursery days in California, Jacarandas were always a love them or hate them type of tree. Those that hated them I have to imagine were OCD types because the major complaint was that glorious lavender carpet! For them it was compulsory to keep it raked clean.
    As for me? Like Kathy, above, I thought it was fairyland every summer! ❤

    • katechiconi says:

      Sad, to feel the urge to tidy away that glorious colour… There’s a road we travel often, up the mountain to my sister’s place, where an avenue of jacarandas stands against a background of bright acid green acacias and then the green blue of the mountains beyond. That really is a stop-and-be-blown-away combo!

  5. Gorgeous.
    Tshwane (the old Pretoria, capital of South Africa) is known as the Jacaranda City! Not sure if you can access this image: http://satravelblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/jacarandas-pta.jpg
    There are more than a few jacarandas in Cape Town, but we cannot compete with the magnificence up north 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      Yup, that’s a lot like Grafton! Jacarandas are all over NSW, from Sydney down south to Grafton on the border of Queensland. There are lots of them in southern Queensland too, but further north, the climate is less favourable and we get more of the tropical species, like poincianas, tibouchinas, etc.

      • jmcheney says:

        Oh, I adored the glorious poicianas & tibouchinas too in my Florida town. Right now in the North Carolina Blue Ridge we have the maples in flaming autumn colors & all the lovely trees that turn lemon yellow, yellow orchre, & burgundy. One good blow & they will all be “bare ruined choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.” Alas.

  6. nanacathy2 says:

    I did a double take on your first picture and wondered if the colour balance had gone on my tablet, or if you had been changing the colours and then I read the text and the blossom is really purple. These trees are amazing. I love the pictures, thank you so much for taking them through the windscreen.

  7. glamjam1 says:

    That’s just beautiful ❤️ Magical trees!!

  8. cazinatutu says:

    Magic. Brought back fond memories of when I lived in Africa.

  9. tialys says:

    I thought I’d seen jacarandas somewhere but I don’t remember all that lovely bloomage (made up word?) so perhaps I haven’t. Lovely camping weather by the sound of it – bon courage.

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s really lavish 🙂
      We’re crossing our fingers about the camping, and have a plan B in place if it’s bucketing down tomorrow, when we’re due to pitch the tent.

  10. jmcheney says:

    I shared this blog on my facebook page, Kate. Thank you.

  11. lbick says:

    Those trees are beautiful! Good luck camping 😀 Stay dry and have fun 😀

  12. dayphoto says:

    What amazingly beautiful trees! PURPLE! Just love it!!

  13. magpiesue says:

    Wow, that really does look like a fantasy landscape. What it must be like in person! We’re about to lose all the autumnal color around here. The wind and rain are raking the leaves from the trees. I hope you get some drier weather for your camping adventure!

    • katechiconi says:

      In this particular city, they’re everywhere you look. The trees are scattered all over the southern part of Australia, but concentrated here.
      The forecast isn’t looking good. We’re simply hoping for dry-ish weather to put up and take down the tent. For the rest… let it rain.

  14. craftycreeky says:

    They’re beautiful, I remember seeing lots in flower in Istanbul on the hillsides, wonderful colour! Hope the weather improves 🙂

  15. anne54 says:

    Our street trees are jacarandas, although only ‘teenage’ ones at the moment. They usually flower in November, so I have that loveliness to loo forward to. I am sorry that the weather has been awful, but it must be wonderful to just be on the road. Fingers crossed for some drier weather.

  16. We had streets lined with them when I lived in Southern California. I loved them but stepping on the flowers could be a hazard. Slippery little buds. But rain or not, seeing a whole line of those spells good times on your trip. We are having lots of rain too. We get it all autumn and winter unless it turns to snow. 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      We’ve had 4 dry months, and the one weekend we’ve planned to go away, the rain had to arrive. But we need it so… no-one is complaining, we’ll all do our best to have a good time anyway.

  17. claire93 says:

    gosh! We’re used to seeing pink or white blossom on trees, even red and lilac, but nothing as magnificent as these purples!

  18. Jacarandas are my favourite tree. Ours are out, as well as the Silky Oaks, and if you’re lucky there might still be a few blooms left on the Paulownia avenue on the way into the village. We’ve had lovely rain but it looks like clearing now for a while. Good timing!

  19. rutigt says:

    Beautiful colors! I have never seen a Jakaranda tree blooming, thanks for showing even if it´s raining! Hope you´ll get better weather soon!

  20. gwenniesgardenworld says:

    breathtaking tree’s !!!!!

  21. I love Jacaranda trees. We have a few planted in downtown San Jose. We were lucky to visit Argentina when they were in full bloom in October of 1995. I’ll never forget that magnificent blanket of purple blooms on the ground and more in the canopy above. What a wonderful trip you’ve had.

    • katechiconi says:

      Truly, the trip was stunning, but a lot of it was seen at some speed, and often through a curtain of rain!

      • Wow, that’s a lot of rain. I’m envious, but only because it is so rare here. I’m sure it gets tedious after awhile.

      • katechiconi says:

        We’re used to it :-/ There’s a reason there are only two seasons in the tropics: the Wet and the Dry! My very first experience of the former came in the months before the Husband and I got married, when I encountered *warm* flood water for the first time. I have a wonderful photo of him wreathed in smiles, knee deep in floodwater under a huge umbrella. It just doesn’t get cold in the rain here…

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