An introduced South African species, Cape Honeysuckle (Tecoma capensis) has widely naturalised along the coastal regions of Australia, including eastern Queensland, coastal and central northern New South Wales, eastern Victoria and Norfolk Island. It has been identified as an invasive species in a number of countries.

Cape honeysuckle (Tecoma capensis)
Cape honeysuckle (Tecoma capensis)

A fast growing woody perrenial vine/shrub, it is noted for the flowers, being able to flower at different times throughout the year. It bears several flowers borne on short temrinal racemes or narrow panicles. The flowers are tubular in shape, the corolla being fused petals, creating a curved funnel-shaped, approximately 4-7 cm long. The flowers are two-lipped with five oblong spreading lobes, with colours that are a bright orange, orange-red to almost scarlet in colour.

Cape honeysuckle (Tecoma capensis)
Cape honeysuckle (Tecoma capensis)

Common name
Cape Honeysuckle, Fire Flower, Flame Vine, Red Tecoma, Tecoma.

The flowers of Tecoma capensis are popular for providing pollen for certain insects such as the European Honey Bee (Apis mellifera).

  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Clade: Tracheophytes
  • Clade: Angiosperms
  • Clade: Eudicots
  • Clade: Asterids
  • Order: Lamiales
  • Family: Bignoniaceae
  • Genus: Tecoma
  • Species: T. capensis
  • Binomial name: Tecoma capensis

Footnote & References

  1. Australian Indigenous Plant Identification – many thanks to members of this Facebook group for identifying this plant, including Iain Harrison (Admin), Pat James, Beverley Hooper.
  2. Cape Honeysuckle (Tecoma capensis), Brisbane City Council, weedidenticationtool,