Grewia occidentalis (Lavender Star Flower) is a large shrub or small tree, native to South Africa, which can be used for bonsai. It will grow to a height of 5 to 10 feet tall in ideal conditions, while in cooler regions it will usually remain a small tree, reaching a maximum height of 10 to 20 feet. It thrives in full sun or semi-shade and regular watering is necessary for optimum growth. In the spring and summer, the airy foliage is accented with 1.5 inch wide pink, blue, lavender, or purple flowers that attract many butterflies and hummingbirds.
Grewia occidentalis is a surprisingly hardy plant, tolerating temperatures as low as 30°F for a short period of time, making it suitable for USDA zones 9-11. This plant is best grown in a container in cooler regions, and with regular cutting back after flowering it can be kept in a desired shape. The plant should also be kept moist and be fertilized three times a year with an acid-loving fertilizer, with an iron supplement once a year to supplement its chlorotic tendencies.