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Commiphora harveyi


Water Needs

low; moderate; high

Commiphora harveyi
Tree medium
Red-stemmed Corkwood or Bronze Paper Commiphora

8 x 7 m


Light Conditions

sun; semi-shade


light; tender


white; October to December; spring; summer

Garden Situation

sun; semi-shade; damp soils; damp sun; dry soils; clay soils; container; rockery gravel; slope bank; bonsai; feature tree; wildlife birds insects


woodland forest; Coastal Eastern Cape; Coastal KZN; bushveld; grassland


subtropical east coast; bushveld savanna; thicket

Rain Season


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This fascinating small to medium tree, confined to the warm east of the country, I’m afraid, provides quite spectacular bark year round, so plant it as a focal point. In the wild hikers will come across this tree most often on the hot, north-facing slopes, often amongst rocks. A versatile species though, as it grows equally well in coastal forests. Shape varies from upright to spreading and rather squat with low-growing branches. Copper-coloured bark peels off to uncover a remarkable green-bronze underbark. Tiny white flowers hide amongst the bright green foliage of the light canopy; leaves turn yellow in autumn before dropping. 1 cm round fruits attract birds. Only females bear fruit. Growth rate is around 1 m per year.

Commiphora harveyi
Commiphora harveyi
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