Sideroxylon inerme

Sideroxylon inerme


Common Names

White Milkwood (english)
Witmelkhout (afrikaans)
Mutaladzi-Vhufa (venda)
Umakhwelafingqane (zulu)


Genus Sideroxylon
Species inerme
SA Plant Number 579
Basionym Sideroxylon inerme


Sideroxylon inerme is a hardy, evergreen, small to medium or large tree with a beautiful, round, dark-green, lush crown. A feature of this tree is the grey-brown bark that cracks into rectangles. The leathery, dark-green leaves are smooth and shiny and turn red with age.

From November to April it bears small greenish-white, strongly-scented flowers which Mousebirds love to eat. The flowers are followed by attractive, juicy, black berries that attract birds and other wildlife to the garden.

This species has been declared a protected tree and some old specimens are National Monuments. It has many traditional and medicinal uses.

The White Milkwood makes a good garden and container subject, and grows well on the Highveld in sun or semi-shade if protected from wind.

Size: 4 to 15m


Moth host plant:

Sideroxylon inerme is a host plant of the Pallid Emperor moth (Cirina forda)



Limpopo, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu Natal,  Eastern Cape, Western Cape

Coastal Scrub


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