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South African National List of Trees No. 298

Family: Meliaceae

Common Name: Cape Ash.

Name from: common name from the general resemblance to the European Ash, Fraxinus excelsior.

Habit: medium- to large-sized evergreen or semi-deciduous tree, with a cylindrical trunk and a large bushy crown.

Height: 7 - 10m, occasionally up to 25m.

Bark: whitish-grey and smooth when young, dark grey, fissured and scaly when older.

Leaves: pinnate, spirally arranged, glossy green, sometimes with a pinkish patch or edge.

Flower: small, white, sweet-scented. Sept. - Nov.

Wood: pale yellow to pinkish-brown, light, soft and even-grained.

Fruit: medium-sized round berries, yellowish to bright red. Dec. - Apr.

Uses: wood occasionally used for furniture. The bark has been used for tanning, the roots to treat headaches and coughs, and the leaves as a remedy for intestinal worms.

Acknowledgements:  information has primarily been sourced, and occasional phrases directly quoted, from:

von Breitenbach, Dr. F  1974,  Southern Cape Forests and Trees,  The Government Printer, Pretoria.                       

Coates Palgrave, Meg  2002,  Keith Coates Palgrave Trees of Southern Africa,  Struik, Cape Town.

Other information sources are listed on the References page.