Peddiea africana Harv.

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Peddiea africana

Photo: Bart Wursten
Fern Gully, Vumba

Peddiea africana

Photo: Bart Wursten
Bunga Forest, Vumba

Peddiea africana

Photo: Bart Wursten
Cloudlands, Vumba

Peddiea africana

Photo: Bart Wursten
By road from Swynnerton Memorial to main road, Chirinda Forest

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

Synonyms: Peddiea dregei Meisn.
Peddiea fischeri Engl.
Peddiea harveyi Meisn.
Common names: Chiburawaringa (Shona) Green flower tree (English) Poison olive (English) Rusitu (Shona)
Frequency: Common in Eastern Highlands
Status: Native
Much-branched shrub or small tree, occurring in the understorey of montane evergreen forest. Leaves alternate, glossy dark green, leathery, elliptic, lanceolate or oblanceolate, 3-12 cm long; base decurrent making the leaves look sessile or shortly petiolate; margin entire. Inflorescences terminal 3-10-flowered umbels. Flowers green, calyx shortly 4-5-lobed with a ribbed tube 1-2 cm long; petals absent. Fruit an ovoid berry 10-14 mm long, with an apical point, hairless, purple to black when ripe.
Notes: The species is often easily recognized by two features: 1. the white spots, which mark nearly every specimen (image 1). These markings are caused by a parasite, which seems to target Peddiea africana exclusively; and 2. if a side branch is picked, there is never a clean break; the outer bark of the twig it is attached to peels off.
Derivation of specific name: africana: African
Habitat: In understorey of montane evergreen forest.
Altitude range: (metres) 1400 - 2000 m
Flowering time:Sep - Feb
Worldwide distribution: Fairly widespread in tropical Africa, Eswatini and South Africa.
Zimbabwe distribution: E
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Images last updated: Monday 2 October 2017

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 276. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 653. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 43.

Coates Palgrave, K. (revised and updated by Meg Coates Palgrave) (2002). Trees of Southern Africa 3rd edition. Struik, South Africa Page 775.

Da Silva, M.C., Izidine, S. & Amude, A.B. (2004). A preliminary checklist of the vascular plants of Mozambique. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 30 Sabonet, Pretoria Page 113.

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 22.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 262.

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 80.

Peterson, B. (updated by Verdcourt, B.) (2006). Thymelaeaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(3) Pages 91 - 93. Also as Peddiea fischeri (Includes a picture).

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 101. As Peddiea fischeri

Schmidt, E., Lötter, M. & McCleland, W. (2002). Trees and shrubs of Mpumalanga and Kruger National Park Jacana, Johannesburg, South Africa Pages 452 - 453. (Includes a picture).

Steedman, E.C. (1933). Some Trees, Shrubs and Lianes of Southern Rhodesia. Page 54. as Peddiea dregei (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 180.

Van Wyk, B. & Van Wyk, P. (1997). Field Guide to Trees of Southern Africa. Struik, South Africa Pages 222 - 223. (Includes a picture).

Van Wyk, B. & Van Wyk, P. (2013). Field Guide to Trees of Southern Africa (Second edition) Struik, South Africa Pages 266 - 267. (Includes a picture).

White, F. (1962). Forest Flora of Northern Rhodesia Oxford Univ. Press. Pages 272 - 273. As Peddiea fischeri (Includes a picture).

White, F., Dowsett-Lemaire, F. & Chapman, J.D. (2001). Evergreen forest flora of Malawi Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Pages 568 - 569. (Includes a picture).

Wursten, B., Timberlake, J. & Darbyshire, I. (2017). The Chimanimani Mountains: an updated checklist. Kirkia 19(1) Page 100.

Other sources of information about Peddiea africana:

Our websites:

Flora of Malawi: Peddiea africana
Flora of Mozambique: Peddiea africana

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Peddiea africana
African Plant Database: Peddiea africana
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Peddiea africana
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Peddiea africana
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Peddiea africana
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Peddiea africana
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Peddiea africana
JSTOR Plant Science: Peddiea africana
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Peddiea africana
Plants of the World Online: Peddiea africana
Tropicos: Peddiea africana
Wikipedia: Peddiea africana

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Peddiea africana., retrieved 30 May 2024

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