Plumbago capensis, more commonly known as plumbago, is a South African native that can be found in the Museum’s Olmsted Garden. The sky blue flowers of the plumbago plant bloom during May up until the first frost of the winter season. Plumbago is able to grow in the shade as well as survive moderate droughts throughout the year.
Throughout the years, plumbago has been cultivated for various uses. One of these uses is as a remedy for broken bones, warts, and other wounds. Others have used plumbago as a snuff to cure headaches. A stranger, more superstitious use of plumbago was to induce vomiting so that the individual could expel nightmares. A less peculiar superstition involves taking a stick of the plumbago and placing it in the thatch of a hut to protect it from lightning. No matter how plumbago is being used, it is a lovely addition to any garden and a must-see here at the Museum.