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Bladder nut

Bladder nut

Scientific Name: Diospyros whyteana

Other Names: Blackbark, Swartbas, Mohlatsane, Munyavhili, umTenatane, uManzimane, umKahze

Bladdernut is an evergreen shrub or small multi-stemmed tree bearing edible fruits. It can be found all over Africa naturally in forest, on mountain slopes and in rocky places. It has a wide distribution occurring in all the provinces in South Africa and stretching as far north as Ethiopia. It has dark green, strikingly glossy leaves and creamy fragrant flowers. It has unusual smooth, dark grey, almost black bark and distinctive reddish brown, papery, balloon-like fruit pods. All these make it a very suitable garden tree. Though the fruits are edible, but still it is grown for its attractive features and not for fruits. Scented flowers, hanging from hairy stalks, appear in spring. They are bell-shaped, white to creamy yellow and male and female flowers occur on different trees.