In streets of Kirribilli, Neutral Bay, Cremorne and Mosman, clouds of purple flowers are impossible to miss against the glorious, late Spring blue skies.
Late in the season comes the moment author Delia Falconer describes in her biography of Sydney, when the number of fallen petals match those still suspended on the tree.
“I love the way the tree’s shadow is then coloured purple; it feels a bit like walking through an impressionist painting,” she writes. “It’s also the most treacherous time. A quick canvas of the office supplied two casualties by jacaranda: a pond full of fish, smothered by a day’s petal-fall, and a car, written off after it rounded a corner slick with blossom.”
McDougall St in Kirribilli is one of the most popular Jacaranda locations in Sydney.
As Sydney Living Museum says, everyone has a jacaranda story, a favourite tree they return to year after year. And, as Falconer notes, this annual event in the life of the city is the closest thing we have to hanami, the Japanese tradition of viewing cherry blossom.
The jacaranda may not always have been Sydney’s, but for a few magical weeks it is a dream tree for the city – ardently, abundantly ours.