Friday, October 10, 2008

one day while driving

Cat's claw/showers of gold vine (macfadyena uncata)

One day while driving to Bridgetown our Capital, (and minding my own business of course), I suddenly caught this bright flash of yellow in the corner of my right eye. I looked further to the right and lo and behold there was a spectacular display of yellow flowers cascading down a huge mahogany tree. It took my breath away! Without hesitating I quickly turned right into the driveway and proceeded towards this magnificent display. I parked the car and looked around and saw a sign that stated that the property was owned by a religious group whose headquarters was in Jamaica. It was a very tranquil spot an oasis in the city. There were two dilapidated buildings one in stone and the other in wood. I got out and walked towards the tree. I called out to see if there was someone around and a youngish man came out of one of the buildings. I asked him about the property and he explained that he was the caretaker and that it was owned by the church and used as a training center. I then told him that the beautiful yellow vine beckoned me onto the property. He laughed and explained that it only flowers around Easter time or around April. Luckily I had my camera with me, I then asked him if I can take some pictures and if I can have some seedlings. I took my photos and he even helped me pull up a few plants and wished me a good day. I left feeling on top of the world. I have tried planting the seedlings under a huge tree in my garden but none survived. I plan to go back some time soon. It will probably take years for a vine that size to become established but I will keep hope alive. I don't know the name of this vine but as soon as I do I will post it. This vine can also been seen covering old sugar cane mills dotted around the island. I have discovered the name of this plant, common names are cat's claw/showers of gold vine and the latin name is macfadyena uncata


  1. That looks absolutely mindblowing. I can guess how it stopped you in your tracks. Pity you didnt get it to grow for you but well, you could always go back there again. What a great way of getting people to go to church more often !

  2. Gorgeous. Cat's Claw is one of my favourite vines. I have it in my saman tree but it doesn't bllom like this.
    Thanks for sharing,

  3. Lovely photos of your beautiful island - had the good fortune to visit & stay in St James parish 10 years ago - we travelled everywhere by bus - and could not get enough of the gardens. We were there at Easter & the flowers at church were breath-taking. Wonder....Do you think you might have more success with cuttings with this vine? It is just stunning!


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