Small Pistol Bush/ Lemon Pistol Bush.
pale yellow; autumn
screen; semi-shade; water; shrubbery; wildlife butterflies nesting birds
coastal kzn; woodland forest; grassland
highveld; subtropical east coast
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While it grows well in many areas of the country, its natural distribution range is very restricted – on the banks of the Komati River to the south of Komatipoort. The only visual similarities to D. adhatodoides are the shape of the flowers and how they grow on the shrub. Also a great very neat screening shrub, the leaves are much smaller and brighter green in colour. The flowers are much smaller, with the same orchid style flower, but a lemon cream rather than white, and with the same purple stripe inside the flower tube. Fruits are also club-shaped, splitting open with a much smaller cracking sound, being of a much smaller size. It can be propagated the same way as D. adhatodoides. A smaller shrub than our other species, reaching 3 m in height, it has a medium growth rate, flowering as young as 2 years. A very neat shrub, it creates a bright green screen in light to semi-shade. While D adhatodoides can be more tree- like, this species retains all of the branches at ground level. It prefers areas with a warm summer, is sensitive to frost, and will cope with a short drought period. Its smaller size makes it perfect for very small gardens. In light shade plant it with the dark leafed groundcover, Plectranthus ciliatus in front, with the dark strappy leaves of Dietes grandiflora or butcheriana, or in a mixed shrubbery. Planted with other shrubs under tall trees like Celtis africana it will help to create the layered, protective shrubbery so loved by birds.