The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Red Beech

Afrikaans name: Rooiboekenhout

Red Beech

Red Beech

Photo © Steven Herbert

Protorhus longifolia

The Red Beech is a medium-sized tree that can grow to a height of 15 metres. It is found in a variety of habitats including woodland, forest and along river banks.

It has long dark green leaves that are quite shiny. It gets clusters of greenish-white, or yellowish, flowers that are borne in clusters. The fruit is just over 1 cm in lenghth and becomes purplish as they ripen.

The bark of the Red Beech can be smooth or rough and is dark brown in colour. It gives off a gum which used to be used by warriors to secure the blades of their assegaais to the shafts.

The wood is sometimes used for furniture and other purposes.

Leaves of the Red Beech

Above - Leaves of the Red Beech

Photo © Steven Herbert

References and further reading

Trees of Southern Africa - 3rd edition - Author: Keith Coates Palgrave - Published: 2002 - Page: 545

The Natal Bushveld - Volume 1 - Author: Natal Parks Board - Published: 1981 - Page: 69

The Complete Field Guide to Trees of Natal, Zululand and Transkei - Author: Elsa Pooley - Published: 1994 - Page: 244

Sappi Tree Spotting: KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape - 2nd edition - Author: Val Thomas and Rina Grant - Published: 2004 - Page: 282

Everyones Guide to Trees of South Africa - Author: Keith, Paul and Meg Coates Palgrave - Published: 1989 - Page: 56

Pocket Guide - Trees of Southern Africa - Author: Piet van Wyk - Published: 2013 - Page: 77

A Field Guide to the Trees of Southern Africa - Author: E. Palmer - Published: 1983 - Page: 197


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