Scientific Name – Dovyalis caffra
Synonim – Aberia caffra, Aberia edulis.
Common name(s) – Kei-apple, umkokolo, appelkoosdoring, mahlono, mutunu.
Distribution and Habitat – is indigenous to the southern regions of Africa, including Malawi, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and South Africa.
Description – shrub or small tree, dioecious, 3-5 m, rarely to 8 m. Bark grey and smooth, flaking in square patches on larger trees; branches with strong spines to 6 cm long. Leaves in tight clusters on short lateral branchlets; obovate or oblong, 3 -5 x 1.5-2.5 cm; glossy green above, paler below; young leaves sparsely hairy, mature leaves hairless; petiole to 0.5 cm long. Flowers, male flower small, creamy-green, in dense clusters on short lateral shoots; female flowers in sparse clusters of 1-4 on longer stalks. Flowering to Novembre-January. Fruit large, 2.5-5 cm, round, velvety; bright yellow when ripe with a short stalk and short styles that persist; they contain 5-15 seeds. Pollination is by insect.
Growth rate – moderath growth, 60 cm/year. Starts to fruit when at least 3-5 years old.
Tolerances – is extremely drought resistant and also tolerate salinity, even ocean spray; tolerate -5°C. Cannot tolerate damp sites.
Requirements – prefers well-drained soils, full sun or partial shade.
Management – it responds well to pruning.
Propagation – by seed, but this is not recommended for purposes of fruit production. Viability maintained for every 2 years in hermetic at 5 °C. 24 000 seminte/kg. Germinate within 12-20 days and are easily transplanted. Seeds should be sown immediately in nursery beds. Young plants must be protected for the 1st 2 years.
The plant can be propagated from semisoft cuttings, such techniques assure the fruit quality, and relative thorniness. Vegetative propagation yields fruits about 2 years earlier than seedlings.
Pest and Diseases – larvae of the African leopard butterfly, Phalanta phalanta feed on the leaves.
Garden Partners – the plant exhibits allelopathy, its roots excreting chemicals that discourage the growth of other plants in its vicinity.
Properties and Uses - fruit edible, with a high vitamin C content (80-120 mg/g), potassium (600 mg), and makes an excellent jam.
Widely cultivated for fruits and as a hedge.
Dovyalis caffra can be spaced close together to form an impenetrable hedge around homesteads and garden to keep out animals.
Leaves browsed by antelope.
The wood is white, dense and heavy.
Ernst Schmidt, Mervyn Looter, Warren McCleland – Trees and Shrubs of Mpumalanga and Kruger National Park – Jacana Mediam, 2002
Geoff Nichols, David Johnson, Sally Johnson – Down to earth: Gardening with Indigenous Shrubs – Struik Publishers, 2006
Jules Janick, Robert E. Paull – The Encyclopedia of Fruit and Nuts – CABI Publishing, 2007
National Research Council – lost Crops of Africa – National Academy Press, 2008
Steve Woodhall - Field Guide to Butterflies of South Africa – Struik Publishers, 2005
Trees and shrubs
Evergreen tree. Leaves opposite, coriacee, oblong to elliptic-lanceolata, 8-18 x 2-4.5 cm, top acuminata, petiole 2-4 mm long. Male cones are cylindrical, grouped 3-4 at underarms, female cones are solitary, the armpit leaves.
Fraxinus excelsior - Ash
Deciduu tree, 30-40 m high, stem right, branched at the top, crown ovoid, large and rare. A young bark is smooth, light gray green and mature forms at the thick crust with a small crack, dark color. Lujerii round, flattened at the bud, glabra, green-olive trees, with dark buds.
Quercus robur - oak, Tufan
native trees (Romania), robust 50 m high, 1-2 m stem diameter, crown wide, irregular. Ritidom dark brown, deep furrow. Crown deep and wide, with vigorous branches, units, stretched horizontally, can cover the maximal development of 200-300 sqm. Lujerii annually, vigorous, edge, brown-olive trees, glabra, with small lenticele rare.
Deciduu shrub, 2-5 m high. Bark gray young branches are yellow-green. Leaves alternate; paripenat-compound, 4-6 pairs of folio oval-elliptic, 10-35 mm long, dark green in summer and autumn yellow, 5-10 cm long; spinescente Stipe. Flowers solitary, Corola yellow, 20-25 mm long, increase the armpit leaves, blooming from May to June.
Ageratum houstonianum - rods
Ageratum houstonianum is an ornamental species cultivated for borders, cut flowers or pots. In Europe it is cultivated as ornamental plants in the 1800.
Ajuga chamaepitys - herbaceous annual Euro-Mediterranean, grows around the Mediterranean, in warm and dry, up to 1500 m altitude.
Theobroma cacao - the tree deciduu originating from semi-tropical forests of Brazil, Mexico and the U.S.A
The genus name derives from the Greek "theos" = god, and 'bromine' = food, food of the gods.
Buphthalmum salicifolium - herbaceous plant, perennial. Originally from the Balkans and Eastern Alps, growing limestone land in arid forests, wet meadows and sunny, from 200 to 2100 m altitude.