Purple Rain

It is truly a blessing to enjoy such vivid nature in the middle of a massive city filled with grey buildings. After a round of gusty winds or a good rain shower, the flowers fall from the branches and paint the grounds in periwinkle. At such times, it feels like you are strolling through a live painting.

Where does it live?:

Originally from the Northeastern mountainous jungles of Argentina, Paraguay, Brazil and Bolivia, the jacarandá was brought down to this country’s capital city in the 1800s.

In a recent count this month of November 2021,13,873 jacarandás were confirmed to line various sidewalks throughout Buenos Aires, and 5,050 are growing in open green spaces. There are plans to double that number of trees in the next ten years! The jacarandá is a great tree to coexist with big city life here. Its wood is strong and resistant, and its roots are not invasive, so these trees are hardy but don’t push through planned urban structures, like sidewalks or paved roads. 

How does it use its environment to survive?:

I might argue that we humans need nature more than nature needs us. The bark, seeds and leaves of the jacarandá serve as treatment for different types of diseases, like certain skin and blood diseases. Its flowers give nectar to hummingbirds and various birds, and its branches give shelter to communities of butterflies. Because Buenos Aires does not tend to freeze, this subtropical tree has adapted really well to its new home.