Trema orientalis (L.) Blume

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Trema orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Leopard Rock Game Reserve, Vumba

Trema orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Leopard Rock Game Reserve, Vumba

Trema orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Edge of camp site, Chirinda Forest

Trema orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Rusitu Forest.

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Synonyms: Trema guineensis (Schumach. & Thonn.) Ficalho
Common names: Elm (English) Pigeonwood (English)
Frequency: Frequent
Status: Native
Tree or shrub to 10-15 m. Bark smooth, grey. Stipules 4-7 mm, lanceolate. Leaves: petiole 7-12 mm; lamina 7-14 × 2-7.5 cm, oblong-lanceolate to ovate; margin serrate all round, even towards the base; base rounded to cordate; apex acuminate. Cymes 5-10 mm (to 30 mm in fruit), usually congested, mostly male flowers but some bisexual at tip. Ovary pubescent. Fruits 2-4 mm, black, glabrescent.
Notes: Leaves of this species are often infested with distinct galls caused by the gall mites Neserella decora and N. tremae in the family Eriophyidae.
Derivation of specific name: orientalis: oriental, eastern
Habitat: In forest clearings and at forest edges, both montane and riverine and also sometimes in woodland, in areas of higher rainfall
Altitude range: (metres)
Flowering time:Mainly Dec - Feb
Worldwide distribution: Throughout Africa south of the Sahara, Madagascar, Mascarene Islands and tropical Asia.
Zimbabwe distribution: N,W,C,E,S
Growth form(s): Tree.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species: Charaxes cithaeron cithaeron (Food plant)
Philotherma rosa (Food plant)
Pseudobunaea tyrrhena (Food plant)
Charaxes castor flavifasciatus (Larval foodplant)
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 69. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 56.

Chapano, C. & Mugarisanwa, N.H. (2003). Plants of the Matobo District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 35.

Coates Palgrave, K. (revised and updated by Meg Coates Palgrave) (2002). Trees of Southern Africa 3rd edition. Struik, South Africa Page 128.

Dowsett-Lemaire, F. (1989). The flora and phytogeography of the evergreen forests of Malawi. I: Afromontane and mid-altitude forests; Bull. Jard. Bot. Nat. Belg. 59(1/2) Page 20.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 233.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 81.

Siebert, S. & Mössmer, M. (Editors) (2002). SABONET Southern Mozambique Expedition 2001; Provisional Plant Checklist of the Maputo Elephant Reserve (MER) and Licuati Forest Reserve (LFR) SABONET News 7(1) Page 29.

Smith-Meyer, M.K.P. & Ueckermann, E,A. (1989). African Eriophyoidae: A new Genus Neserella and Cecidodectes Nalepa (Acari: Eriophyidae) from Trema orientalis (L.) Blume Phytophylactica 21 Pages 411 - 413. Protologue of gall mites Neserella tremae and N. decora (Includes a picture).

Steedman, E.C. (1933). Some Trees, Shrubs and Lianes of Southern Rhodesia. Page 4. as Trema guineensis (Includes a picture).

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 181.

Timberlake, J.R., Bayliss, J., Dowsett-Lemaire, F., Congdon, C., Branch, B., Collins, S., Curran, M., Dowsett, R,J., Fishpool, L., Francisco, J., Harris, Kopp, M. & de Sousa, C. (2012). Mt Mabu, Mozambique: Biodiversity and Conservation Report produced under the Darwin Initiative Award 15/036. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, London Page 76.

Wilmot-Dear, C.M. (1991). Ulmaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(6) Pages 4 - 6. (Includes a picture).

Other sources of information about Trema orientalis:

Our websites:

Flora of Malawi: Trema orientalis
Flora of Mozambique: Trema orientalis
Flora of Zambia: Trema orientalis
Flora of Zimbabwe: cultivated Trema orientalis

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Trema orientalis
African Plant Database: Trema orientalis
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Trema orientalis
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Trema orientalis
ePIC (electronic Plant Information Center): Trema orientalis
Flora Zambesiaca web site: Trema orientalis
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Trema orientalis
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network): Trema orientalis
iNaturalist: Trema orientalis
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Trema orientalis
JSTOR Plant Science: Trema orientalis
Kew Herbarium catalogue: Trema orientalis
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Trema orientalis
Plants of the World Online: Trema orientalis
Tropicos: Trema orientalis
Wikipedia: Trema orientalis

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-21

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2021). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Trema orientalis., retrieved 25 July 2021

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