One of the most widespread of South Africa's tree... more
Ziziphus mucronata - seeds
One of the most widespread of South Africa's tree species. The glossy, drooping leaves are conspicuously three-veined from the base. The branches are usually covered with stipular spines, one curved and one straight. Inconspicuous yellowish flowers are borne in clusters and produce abundant nectar that attract many insects, especially bees. The roundish fruits are russet-colored when mature and contain a dry meal-like pulp. During the Anglo-Boer War, the seeds were ground and the powder used as a coffee substitute. It is a very rewarding garden tree, growing well in any climate but a cold, wet one. It is drought and frost resistant and is a good choice for gardens where little else can grow.