Flora – Interesting Anecdotes

Kruger National Park is home to an amazing abundance of flora. There are around 1,982 species of plants.

You would need to be a real botanist to be able to identify them all, but without this special training, there are still many trees and plants that a tourist to the game reserve can learn to recognise.

From the baobab tree to the lala palm, the sausage tree to the fever tree, the park’s greenery has interesting stories to tell.

Plant Stories

Baobob treeThe baobab tree is nicknamed the upside-down tree and you can clearly see why! It’s branches look like the tree’s root system above the ground. Baobab trees appear further north in Kruger National Park. The southernmost baobab tree in the park is between Satara Rest Camp and Tshokwane Picnic Spot.

Keep a lookout for mopani trees and the mopani worms that you may find on them, chewing away at the leaves. If you’re brave enough, you can try eating a worm. They’re a local delicacy!

The sausage tree is a funny looking tree with giant sausages dangling off rope-like stems! Of course they’re not really sausages, but giant seed pods.

Umbrella thorn treeare characterised by their pale green trunks. They get their name from their native swampy environments. Where the trees grew the malaria carrying mosquitoes also lived.

Put simply, the umbrella thorn tree looks like an umbrella with its flat-topped canopy. It is only one of a few trees which can withstand very harsh, dry conditions.

The lala palm is more common in the northern regions of Kruger National Park. They like to grow in groups on sandy riverbanks.

Vegetation varies throughout the park, based on the park’s 6 ecosystems:

  • Baobab sandveld
  • Mopani scrub
  • Lebombo knobthorn-marula bushveld
  • Mixed acacia thicket
  • Combretum-silver clusterleaf woodland on granite
  • Riverine forest

We’ve just mentioned some of the famous Kruger National Park flora. Look out for them if you’re planning a trip to the park!