Diospyros austro-africana

Diospyros austro-africana

Common Names

Fire-sticks (english)
Kritikom (afrikaans)

Taxonomy

Family EBENACEAE
Genus Diospyros
Species austro-africana
SA Plant Number 190
Basionym Diospyros austro-africana

Description

Diospyros austro-africana is a very hardy, evergreen, attractive, much branched shrub, but can become a small tree in ideal growing conditions.

The small leaves turn a blackish-red in winter.

Tiny red flowers borne from August to November are followed by attractive red to black berries. (As with all Diospyros sp. sexes are on separate plants, therefore only female plants bear fruit).

It attracts birds and insects.

Its unusual foliage makes an interesting addition to any garden, and it is suitable as a beautiful container plant, bonsai subject or for a striking feature in an oriental styled garden.

This extremely hardy and drought resistant shrub is very useful and will grow in most challenging conditions. It gets a lovely twisted shape and stays small if not overwatered and over fertilized. Plant in sun or semi-shade.

Size 2 to 3m

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

Northern Cape, Western Cape, Freestate, Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu Natal

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