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Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Indigenous Beauties : Leucosidea sericea

This is a small tree that I've been wanting to put the spotlight on for a while now. Its common name is Ouhout, which directly translates as 'old wood'. It probably gets this name from the way the trunk and specifically the bark looks old and wizened.

Leucosidea sericea

It is an extremely fast growing, evergreen tree that gets to about 5m in height, it loves full sun, and is often found near rivers or streams. It is best planted in groves and preferably where the bark can be truly appreciated. Even its soft and serrated leaves are beautiful, and release a strong aroma when crushed.

Its flowers are light green to yellow, and appear from Spring to Summer.

It will handle frost easily, but doesn't take well to dry conditions. It would normally grow at higher altitudes - it is quite common along rivers in the Drakensburg.

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