The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Large-leaved Onionwood

Afrikaans name: Grootblaaruiehout

Leaves of a Large-leaved Onionwood

Leaves of the Large-leaved Onionwood tree

Photo © Steven Herbert

Cassipourea gummiflua

The Large-leaved Onionwood is also known as the Broad-leaved Onionwood and is found from South Africa to Kenya and Sierra Leone. This tree even occurs on the Seychelles Islands!

This tree can be found in a wide variety of sizes. In some areas it is a shrub while in others it can grow to 20 metres tall.

The Large-leaved Onionwood gets dense clusters of tiny little white flowers (around 6 mm) along the stems, and small capsule-like fruit. Flowers appear in summer with the seeds being dispersed in autumn.

The name 'Onionwood' arises from the wood of the tree having an onion-like smell when freshly sawn.

Bark of a Large-leaved Onionwood

Bark of the Large-leaved Onionwood tree

Photo © Steven Herbert

The wood is used for a variety of purposes including making poles, crates, toys and charcoal.

References and further reading

The Complete Field Guide to Trees of Natal, Zululand and Transkei - Author: Elsa Pooley - Published: 1994 - Page: 352

Trees of Southern Africa - 3rd edition - Author: Keith Coates Palgrave - Published: 2002 - Page: 787


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