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The Botanical Society of South Africa
       Kwa Zulu-Natal Coastal Branch

Trees 2015

Since trees, with shrubs, provide a framework for the rest of the plants in your garden, and provide homes and food sources for birds and other wildlife, they need to be carefully selected and placed.  When selecting trees consider the size of your garden and whether you want it to be shady or more open. Remember that a number of indigenous trees are very fast-growing ‘pioneer’ species and will create shady areas even before you expected this to happen. You can obtain beautiful effects by planting different flowering trees next to one another. Also, there is much good advice available on beautiful locally indigenous trees that can replace any ‘invader’ trees in your garden.




Acacia burkei

Black Monkey Thorn

Medium tree, vicious thorns, good for nest sites

Acacia sieberiana

Paperbark Thorn

Tree, flat crown, cream flowers, peeling bark. Birds.

Acacia xanthophloea

Fever Tree

Tree, sun, yellow bark and flowers, fast-growing, birds.

Afzelia quanzensis

Pod Mahogany

Large flat-topped tree with pretty pink flowers and seeds, attracts butterflies

Albizia adianthifolia


Beautiful, large deciduous tree provides light shade.

Albizia petersiana

Many-stem Albizia

Beautiful, large deciduous tree provides light shade.

Allophylus dregeanus

Simple-leaf False Currant

Small evergreen tree. White, scented flowers in clusters.

Antidesma venosum


Small tree, decorative cream flowers, profuse berries on female for birds.

Apodytes dimidiata


Neat tree, shiny leaves, cream scented flowers, red and black fruit, birds.

Baphia racemosa

Natal Camwood

Small evergreen tree, beautifully scented, white pea-flowers.

Bersama lucens

Glossy White Ash

Medium evergreen tree, glossy foliage, cream flower spikes, red fruits for birds

Brachylaena discolor

Coast Silver Oak

Fast-growing small tree for coastal or windy areas; good for hedge or screen

Buddleja saligna

False Olive

4m upright spindly tree, dry sun, profuse honey-scented cream flower heads

Calodendrum capense

Cape Chestnut

Beautiful tall tree, profuse pink flowers, butterflies.

Calpurnia aurea

Natal Laburnum

Small tree with repeated displays of soft yellow flowers.

Celtis africana

White Stinkwood

Beautiful large deciduous tree, attracts birds

Chaetacme aristata

Thorny Elm

Large forest tree, excellent for wildlife

Chionanthus peglerae

White Pock Ironwood

Medium evergreen tree, glossy foliage, scented flowers; birds eat fruits

Chrysophyllum viridifolium

Fluted Milkwood

Large forest tree with beautiful fluted stem, rounded crown; birds

Combretum kraussii

Forest Bushwillow

Beautiful seasonal foliage, red winged seeds

Commiphora harveyi

Red-stem Corkwood

Small-medium, sun, deciduous, attractive foliage, peeling bark.

Cordia caffra

Coastal Cordia

Semi-deciduous tree 4-6m, sun, smooth leafed, red berries, birds

Croton gratissimus

Lavender-leaved Croton

Lovely evergreen tree, spreading flattish canopy, pretty silvery bicoloured leaves

Cryptocarya woodii

Cape Quince

Medium evergreen tree - round crown, glossy foliage and edible black fruits

Curtisia dentata


6-12m evergreen tree, sun/semi-shade, attractive serrated bicoloured leaves

Cussonia paniculata

Highveld Cabbage Tree

Small-medium deciduous tree in sun. Angular shape and grey palmate foliage

Cussonia sphaerocephala

Forest Cabbage Tree

Fast-growing tall tree; lovely foliage, small, rounded crown.

Cussonia spicata

Cabbage Tree

Medium deciduous tree. Unusual form and foliage.

Cussonia zuluensis

Zulu Cabbage Tree

Small tree, sun/semi-shade, attractive foliage

Diospyros natalensis

Acorn Diospyros

Small-leaved Jackal-berry

Dombeya rotundifolia

Wild Pear

Small tree, deciduous, sun, profuse white flowers in spring.

Dovyalis caffra

Kei Apple

Good spiny hedge plant, sun/semi-shade, fruit in female for birds

Dovyalis longispina

Natal Apricot

Small thorny evergreen coastal tree. Barrier/screen plant. Edible fruit, birds

Dracaena aletriformis

Large-leaved Dragon Tree

2m, shade to deep shade, birds food and nest plant. Good indoors too.

Dracaena mannii

Small-leaved Dragon Tree

Small decorative tree, sun; fruit for birds.

Euclea natalensis

Natal Guarri

Small tree, sun/shade. Dense crown. Lovely scent. Fruit for birds.

Eugenia natalitia

Common Forest Myrtle

Small-medium tree; sun/shade; edible fruit.

Euphorbia tirucalli

Rubber Euphorbia

Succulent leafless multi-stemmed tree 4-6m, sun, toxic sap, seeds for birds

Ficus polita

Wild Rubber Fig

Handsome tall semi-deciduous tree, glossy heart-shaped leaves, attracts wildlife

Ficus sur

Broom Cluster Fig

Medium-large tree, beautiful bronze new leaves, fast-growing, fruits attract birds

Halleria lucida

Tree Fuchsia

Small tree, unusual white-flowered form, excellent for birds.

Halleria lucida

Tree Fuchsia

Small tree, excellent for birds. Orange, red or maroon flowers

Halleria lucida 'orange'

Tree Fuchsia

Small bushy upright tree, orange tubular flowers, black berries, excellent for birds

Harpephyllum caffrum

Wild Plum

Tall evergreen tree, handsome, fast-growing; dramatic trunk; birds.

Heteromorpha trifoliata

Parsely Tree

Narrow crown, shiny copper stems, yellow to red autumn leaves

Heteropyxis natalensis

Lavender Tree

Small tree, attractive, neat shape. Shiny, scented leaves used in potpourri.

Ilex mitis

Cape Holly

Cold-hardy evergreen tree. Grows beside streams in forests. 5-12m.

Kigelia africana

Sausage Tree

Handsome tree with dark red flowers and decorative fruit

Kiggelaria africana

Wild Peach

Small-medium tree, sun/semi, birds & butterflies.

Loxostylis alata


Flowering (pink) small tree. Reddish fruiting displays. Attractive.

Lydenburgia (Catha) abbottii

Pondo Khat

Rare tall forest tree from Pondoland. Red new leaves and fruit a 3-lobed capsule

Millettia grandis


Graceful small-medium tree, pretty mauve flowers and velvet seedpods.

Mimusops caffra

Coastal Red Milkwood

Decorative tree with dense foliage and red tasty fruit, attracts birds

Nuxia floribunda

Forest Elder

Small-medium tree, sun/semi. Masses of scented white flowers.

Olea africana

African Olive

Small-medium neat tree, sun, edible fruit attracts birds.

Olinia emarginata

Natal Hard Pear

Attractive evergreen tree of colder inland areas, small red berries attract birds

Pavetta revoluta

Dune Bride's Bush

2-5m coastal shrub or small tree, sun/shade. Bunches of scented white flowers

Peddiea africana

Poison Olive

Shrub or small tree up to 5m, shade, pale lime-green flowers

Phoenix reclinata

Wild Date Palm

Graceful multi-stemmed reclining spiny palm. Sun/shade. Birds.

Pittosporum viridiflorum


Small tree, sun/shade, cream-yellow flowers. Red jelly-seeds for birds

Podocarpus falcatus

Outeniqua Yellowwood

Beautiful, classic tall tree, sun/shade. Birds.

Podocarpus henkelii

Natal Yellowwood

Lovely upright tree with glossy dark foliage, attracts birds

Podocarpus latifolius

Real Yellowwood

Large upright evergreen tree with dense green foliage, ripe fruits attract birds

Protorhus longifolia

Red Beech

Medium evergreen coastal tree with old leaves turning red; grey berries for birds

Prunus africana

Red Stinkwood

Tall handsome forest tree; fruit eaten by birds. Bark has medicinal uses

Pseudosalacia streyi

Pondo Rock-lemon

Unusual localised small tree, leathery foliage, horizontal branching, endangered

Ptaeroxylon obliquum


Deciduous tree with lovely autumn foliage and scented cream-yellow flowers

Rauvolfia caffra

Quinine Tree

Large decorative shiny-leaf tree for damp areas.  Attracts birds and butterflies

Rawsonia lucida

Forest Peach

Small evergreen forest tree, shade, attractive toothed foliage, butterflies

Schefflera umbellifera

False Cabbage Tree

Medium upright tree for damp situations, spectacular white flower clusters

Schotia brachypetala

Weeping Boer-been

Beautiful deciduous tree with lovely red flowers that attract sunbirds. Bonsai.

Spirostachys africana


Attractive deciduous tree, good for wildlife; beautiful wood. Poisonous.

Tabernaemontana elegans

Toad Tree

Small tree, shade, scented white flowers, large warted fruit, attracts birds

Tabernaemontana ventricosa

Forest Toad Tree

Smallish attractive tree for shade, scented starry white flowers, toad-like fruit for birds

Teclea natalensis

Natal Cherry-orange

A small evergreen tree with red fruit for birds, attracts swallowtail butterflies

Terminalia phanerophlebia

Lebombo Cluster-leaf

Small tree, 3-6m, pagoda-like,layered branches, autumn foliage, pink winged fruit

Terminalia sericea

Silver Cluster-leaf

Small-medium tree, sun; attractive silver leaves; pink papery fruit.

Trichilia dregeana

Forest Mahogany

Large stately tree, provides full shade, attracts birds, indoor plant when young

Vepris lanceolata

White Ironwood

Attractive, neat tree. Birds and butterflies.

Voacanga thouarsii

Wild Frangipani

Beautiful evergreen tree, damp soil, scented cream flowers, large fruit for birds

Zanthoxylum capense

Small Knobwood

Small forest tree, knobbly bark, attractive small leaves, birds and butterflies

Ziziphus mucronata

Buffalo Thorn

Shiny-leaved spiny tree 5-15m, brown berries, excellent for attracting wildlife