The yellow tree is a-buzzing!

October 25, 2009

Parts of the garden are still a mystery to us.  Before he left Mad Alex gave a rudimentary overview of some of the plants but it was far from complete and, as we’ve since discovered, not entirely accurate.  Gosh, there’s a surprise.

Near the end of the garden, and overhanging the stone wall, was a fairly forlorn 15 foot high tree.  During our first attempt at pruning we cut the tree back, mainly concentrating on removing the branches on our side of the wall as they were fighting with the yucca, an unknown fruit tree and one of the lemon trees.  We left the height, took the weight off the wall, and left all of branches hanging out into the street.

Its hard pruning seems to have done it no harm at all as it is now in full flower.  It is covered in hundreds of most vibrant bright yellow flowers, as well as clusters of seed pods.  We still have no idea what the tree is.

Today, whilst walking down towards the gate, we heard a loud buzzing noise.

For most of April the garden is alive with the sound of bees as they come along to harvest the pollen from the fruit tree flowers, and ensure we get a good fruit crop, but hearing this so late in the year is new.

A little investigation found that the yellow tree was full of the biggest, fattest bees we’ve ever seen.  The bees were moving from flower to flower, diving into each blossom to get the very last pollen in each one.  The sound was so loud that while we were taking photos tourists stopped to look at the trees and the bees.

It turns out that photographing busy bees isn’t easy … but there’s just no other way to get across their size.  So, please excuse any slight out-of-focusness – the depth of field issues were an interesting challenge!

The yellow-flower tree

The yellow-flower tree

The flowers in close-up

The flowers in close-up

For sizing purposes that’s a 1€ coin nestling among the flowers; it just fits inside one of the trumpet flowers.  A little research confirms that the 1€ coin is about the same size as a UK £1 coin and, for our American cousins, the size of a US quarter.

One huge bee in a pretty big flower

One huge bee in a pretty big flower

Preparing for entry

Preparing for entry

We still have no idea what the tree is so any insights or suggestions would be gratefully received.  In the meantime … the buzzing continues!



  1. […] a follow-up from last year.  In October we mentioned that the unidentified yellow tree was inundated with huge bees collecting pollen.  A friend from […]

  2. […] to life.  It’s fascinating to see the difference between the tree now and when it was in full bloom. Yellow […]

  3. have you found the name yet it is also driving me crazy!!!!!

  4. in reply to my own query i`ve found the name of your yellow tree—
    Tecoma stans
    Mike Leonard

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