Diospyros austro-africana

Diospyros austro-africana

Common Names

Star-apple (english)
Jakkalsbos (afrikaans)

Taxonomy

Family EBENACEAE
Genus Diospyros
Species austro-africana
SA Plant Number 602.2
Basionym Diospyros austro-africana

Description

Diospyros austro-africana is a very hardy, attractive, evergreen, multi-stemmed shrub or small tree whose mature, medium- to dark-brown bark, blisters and peals into long, narrow flaky-strips. The reddish-brown branches are finely-haired, similar to the fine hairs on the attractive, small obovate leaves which give this shrub/tree a dusty-silvery appearance.

From August to September it bears pendulous, creamy-white, cerise-pink or red lantern-like flowers which attract birds, butterflies and other insects to the garden. The berries that follow turn red then black and are much sought after by birds. Male and female flowers on separate plants therefore only females bear seed.

This tough, water-wise plant grows in full sun or semi-shade.

Size: 6 to 10m

Wildlife

lnsect food plant:

Attracts insects and birds to the garden with the flowers and fruit.

Uses

Landscaping:
  • Good container plant
  • Makes a good bonsai subject
  • Twisted shape, dense branching and fine leaves make it an interesting addition to an oriental garden

Distribution

Gauteng, North West, Free State, Mpumalanga, Cape Peninsula, Northern Cape, Eastern Cape

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