A picture of a Cape Saffron

Cape Saffron

Cassine peragua

Also known as

Bastard Saffron, False Saffron, Bastersaffraan, Kaapse Saffraan, Lepelhout (Afr.), Umkhukhuze, Umbofanyamogone

Photo by Going.Local (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Moderate care
Moderate watering
Tender

8a-11b

USDA zone

-12°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

15m

Max

5m

1m

Min

2m

Flowering

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images of Cape Saffron

A photo of Cape Saffron
Colourful berries of Cassine peragua
Saffron bark
Flowers and new coppery leaves
Close up of flowers

Cape Saffron Overview

The Cape saffron is a fynbos shrub with fragrant white flowers, and a unique saffron-coloured trunk. Its scientific name (a definitive misnomer) refers to the 'Paraguay tea' with which its discoverer, Linnaeus, had probably confused the Cape-based plant. It has become a common feature in many suburban gardens, where birds enjoy its fruits. ZA Distribution: Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, Western Cape.

Common problems with Cape Saffron

Generally pest and disease free.

    How to propagate Cape Saffron

    Seed

    Seeds are contained in the oval-shaped fruits, which turn dark purple when mature. Best results come from sowing the seeds in warmer months.

    Cuttings

    Heel or tip cuttings from semi-hardened new growth can be placed in a well-drained medium to propagate during warmer months. Rooting is slow, but replanting should be possible after 3-6 months.

    Special features of Cape Saffron

    Attracts birds

    Birds eat the olive-coloured fruits.

    Attractive flowers

    Attracts bees

    Other uses of Cape Saffron

    Timber

    The wood of the Cape saffron has been used locally for centuries to make furniture.

    Other uses