Drosera esterhuyseniae

Elsie Esterhuysen’s Sundew

Drosera esterhuyseniae is an unusual rosetted sundew from the coastal mountains of the Cape. A longer-leaf form is found South of Grabouw through the coastal mountains to Bredasdorp, and the more compact form is found in the area from Grabouw through to the mountains SE of Stellenbosch. This species is notable for its strong semi-erect leaves and golden-green colouration with broad petioles and densely hairy abaxial surfaces similar to most of the xeric species. The northern form has flatter, shorter leaves.

These sundews are primarily montane and grow on gentle slopes in dry, well-draining sandy soils, especially in areas receiving frequent coastal fog that moisten the soil without waterlogging. Flowering occurs in Summer producing several large, purply flowers. In harsh summers the plants can die back and regrow from buds or roots. It is named after Elsie Esterhuysen, a well-known South African botanist.