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In Brisbane, jacarandas usually bloom around October. However, for the past two decades, the flowering season has come earlier with some speculations pointing to climate changes brought about by global warming. In recent years, the purple blooms have started their annual burst of color in September.

One of the best places to go on a jacaranda jaunt is Saint Lucia, particularly the University of Queensland grounds. Once the jacarandas start to bloom, students know that exam season is at hand, and the view of the jacaranda trees in full bloom seems to be a soothing presence during cram weeks at the uni.


UQ Folklore

Photo credit: University of Queensland

UQ has a vast array of jacarandas, which makes it a perfect location for photoshoots on the purple carpet under the jacaranda trees. Since these blooms have been a part of the UQ for as long as anyone can remember, they have firmly woven their way into the uni’s culture. In fact, since the trees bloom usually during exam season, there is a saying around the campus that if a bloom falls onto your head before an exam, you will fail.

Another uni folklore says that when jacarandas start to bloom and the skies turn grey, it is too late for students to open their books to study.

Those who are not superstitious take pleasure at the sight of the purple trees, deriving happiness from their beauty and perennial presence on campus.


The History of Jacarandas

Photo credit: University of Queensland

Even though most people have associated jacarandas with Australia, these trees are not native to Australia at all. They actually came from Brazil. However, jacarandas have adapted well to Australia’s tropical and temperate climates.

The first grown jacaranda tree in Brisbane was at the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens. It was planted in 1864. It became even more popular when a historic artwork ‘Under the Jacaranda’ was made in 1903.