The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Lowveld Cluster-leaf / Purple-pod Cluster-leaf

Afrikaans name: Sterkbos

Leaves of the Lowveld Cluster-leaf tree

Lowveld Cluster-leaf tree

Photo © Steven Herbert

Terminalia prunioides

Although it is often more of a shrub than a tree the Lowveld Cluster-leaf can sometimes reach heights of 10 metres or more. It is also known as the Purple-pod Cluster-leaf.

It is only found in woodand and bushveld areas in the lowveld areas such as Kruger National Park.

The bark of the Lowveld Cluster-leaf is rough and brown to grey in colour. The oval shape leaves grow in bunches or clusters and are dark shade of green on top than below.

The flowers are cream or pale yellow in colour and, for some reason, do not have a pleasant smell. The fruits are purple-red in colour and appear during autumn to winter.

The wood of the Lowveld Cluster-leaf tree is used to construct huts as well as used for the handles of implements.

References and further reading

Trees of Southern Africa - 3rd edition - Author: Keith Coates Palgrave - Published: 2002 - Page: 820

Sappi Tree Spotting: Lowveld - Author: Jacana - Published: 1997 - Page: 70

Piet van Wyks Field Guide to the Trees of the Kruger National Park - 1st edition - Author: Piet van Wyk - Published: 1988 - Page: 180

Field Guide to the Trees of the Kruger National Park - 5th edition - Author: Piet van Wyk - Published: 2008 - Page: 180

A site-by-site guide to trees in the Kruger National Park - Author: Marissa Greeff - Published: 2017 - Page: 90

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