About the Lucky Bean Range

The fresh African breeze through your hair, the free-spirited soar of the birds above you and the raw natural smell of the bushveld grass are all memories and experiences we wish to capture in every piece of the Lucky Bean Range jewellery. So that every time you or a loved one wears one of our pieces, a little bit of your adventure and African experience is with you or them.
The Lucky Bean Range is a nature and African inspired range from lead designer and founder, Mary-Jean Treloar who, after completing her B.Sc. Degree in Interior Architecture, escaped from the busy city life to work first in Namibia and then the South African bushveld. Here her heart found its happy place and an experience that would change her life forever. Working for a top class 5-star Lodge, Mary-Jean soon realized that there was a need and want, in the always busy and buzzing curio shop, for beautiful nature-inspired jewellery made in South Africa that could suit a wide range of people from small children to your beloved Great Aunt back home. Mary-Jean returned back to city life to gain some experience at one of South Africa’s most prestigious architecture firms, but also to enrol for jewellery design and manufacturing courses - all with the lodge industry, love for jewellery design and her longing for the African bushveld as a driving force. Eventually it was time to make the change from the corporate architectural world to the exciting world of jewellery design and manufacture.
All the Lucky Bean range jewellery is handmade, the white oak wooden pieces are designed and then mechanically cut, thereafter they are hand assembled and some of the items, hand painted in a high quality enamel paint. Our silver, brass and copper jewellery is all hand cut and handmade from start to finish.
Our hope is that you will love our jewellery and accessories as much as we do, and that every time you see it and wear it, you’ll see that shimmer of Bushveld love and magic captured inside of it ?

About the Lucky Bean tree

The Lucky Bean Tree

Lucky Bean trees, also known more commonly as Coral trees, are small to medium sized deciduous trees with low branches and a spreading crown of trifoliate, heart-shaped leaflets. They usually grow up to 10m in height, occasionally reaching 12m, blooming in the early spring (from August to September) when it produces its spectacular canopy of bright scarlet, red hot poker-like flowers before its new leaves begin to show. These clusters of cylindrical, compact flower heads standing proud from their stalks are a distinctive feature of the African landscape.

The pods emerge between November and March after flowering ceases. On drying, they burst to scatter 'Lucky Beans' which are shiny orange to coral-red seeds with a black eye.

Lucky Bean Trees were planted as living fences around kraals, homesteads and waterholes, and were one of the first wild trees to be planted in gardens in South Africa. It is not only a useful tree; but is also an important component of the ecosystem - providing food and shelter for a variety of birds, animals and insects.

Many nectar-feeding birds and insects feed on the abundant nectar produced by the flowers. Vervet monkeys and baboons often help themselves as well!. Kudu, nyala, klipspringer, black rhino and baboons graze on the leaves for sustenance. Black rhinos, elephants and baboons eat the bark. Bush pigs eat the roots, and the brown-headed parrot eats and disperses the unripe seed. Birds happily feast on the thirsty insects that come to visit. Barbets and woodpeckers nest in the trunks and soft wood of dead Lucky Bean trees, whereas swarms of bees often inhabit hollow trunks, and the larvae of the Giant charaxes butterfly feed on its leaves.

Lucky Bean trees grow in scrub forest, wooded kloofs, dry woodland, dry savannah, koppie slopes and coastal dune bush as well as high rainfall areas. They occur in a wide range of altitudes and habitats from North West Province, Limpopo, Gauteng, Mpumalanga, through to Swaziland and Kwa-Zulu Natal. Small pockets also occur further north in Zimbabwe, Botswana and Angola.

Traditional African Culture

Lucky Bean trees are widely used in traditional African culture and many people believe they have both medicinal and magical properties. Regarded as sacred trees, they are planted on the graves of tribal chiefs who, while still alive, will also wash in water in which the bark has been soaked as they believe that this will ensure the respect of their people. The flowering of the trees has been, and still is, a good sign to people that it is time to plant their crops. As the name would suggest, people still carry Lucky Beans for luck!

Name of the Lucky bean Tree in Other Languages:

  • Afrikaans: Gewone Koraalboom
  • Sotho: Mokhupye, Mmalę;
  • SiSwati: umSisi
  • Sotho: Mokhungwana;
  • Tsonga: Nsisimbana, Muvale;
  • Tswana: Mophęthę;
  • Venda: Muvhale;
  • Xhosa: umSintsi;
  • Zulu: umSinsi