Friday, October 2, 2009

Assisting our Local Communities

Spring is well and truly upon us and everything is once again bursting with life. Strolling around the TreeCo nursery is a real treat and a testament to Rudi and Leske’s commitment to growing only the finest quality trees - enabling you our valued client, to in turn offer your customers the very best.

During National Arbour Month, TreeCo had the honour of being given the opportunity to donate thirty trees to a most deserving institution.

Ligstraal school in Paarl serves intellectually and physically impaired learners from the surrounding farms and rural areas. Their focus is on developing improved literacy and numeracy skills as well as technology skills, enabling these otherwise disadvantaged learners to become an integral part of society in the future.

We spent a most rewarding day assisting the educators in developing a real interest amongst the learners as to the importance that trees play in creating and maintaining a healthier and more sustainable environment. We were able to explain and to demonstrate the correct way to plant and care for a tree and were thrilled by the enthusiasm shown by the learners.

We plan to make similar donations to various communities on a regular basis in future and would like to encourage all of you to do the same, working together 24/7/365, towards a greener, healthier planet for all.

Spectacular Monthly Tree - October 2009

The Rauvolfia caffra or Quinine tree as it is commonly known is a medium to tall tree that is generally found growing along river banks and on the margins of evergreen forests. This tree has a distinctive upright trunk and a spreading, rounded crown with glossy, bright green leaves that are borne in whorls of 3 to 6. Terminal sprays of sweetly scented flowers appear in spring followed by glossy green fruits with white spots that turn black as they mature. This highly decorative garden subject is much prized for its beautiful form and looks best when planted as a specimen on an open lawn. The common name refers to the thin, bitter latex which was once used to treat malaria but was later found to be ineffective. Reserpine which is obtained from the bark and root bark is used as a tranquilliser and to lower blood pressure.

Our 200kg Quinine trees are a really good deal at present, as they all have beautiful well established canopies and look very mature for their bag size.

Botanical Name: Rauvolfia caffra
Common Name: Quinine tree
Sizes Available: 50kg, 200kg
Quantity in Stock: 100 x 50kg, 30 x 200kg
Average Tree Height: 50kg - 3,0m, 200kg - 3,5 – 4,0m
Average Trunk Thickness: 50kg - 4cm, 200kg - 7cm

Should you require any further information, such as pricing details or should you wish to place an order, please contact Rudi on 082 829 5543 or Leske on 072 385 0270. Alternatively you are welcome to email us with your enquiry at

Ravolfia caffra - 50kg

Rauvolfia caffra - 200kg

Acacia xanthophloea – Fever tree

The Acacia xanthophloea is well known as an exceptionally striking indigenous tree. With its remarkable sulphur – yellow bark, sparse, spreading crown of feathery foliage and tall upright growth, the Fever tree is one of our most sought after ornamental species. In its natural habitat Acacia xanthophloea is often found growing in large groups in swampy, low lying areas. This versatile tree is moderately drought resistant, but performs much better when given adequate water. The bright yellow sweetly scented globose flowers, appear from September to November attracting bees, butterflies, insects and insectivorous birds to the garden. The seed pods and young leaf shoots are eaten by baboons.


Botanical Name: Acacia xanthophloea
Common Name: Fever tree
Genus: Fabaceae
RSA National Tree No’: 189


The Fever tree is a stunning subject within any urban landscape. As a specimen on a large lawn it makes a magnificent statement and in winter, when the tree is bare, the lovely silhouette with its exceptional colour is a real show stopper. When planted in groups the Acacia xanthophloea lends a truly ethnic ambiance to the garden and can easily be under planted with a wide variety of greenery as the trees cast only light shade. As an avenue along a driveway or as a street planting, the Fever tree creates an absolutely unforgettable sight.


Height: 10 – 15m
Spread: 10 – 12m
Deciduous/Evergreen: Deciduous
Growth Habit: Acacia xanthophloea occurs naturally in bushveld and is generally restricted to river banks and low lying areas where it is often found in large groups.
Bark: The unusual bark is smooth with a powdery coating that is greenish yellow in colour but is green underneath if the powder is rubbed off. As the tree matures the bark flakes off in paper thin layers. The slender, white spines appear in pairs.
Foliage: The leaves of the Fever tree have 3 – 6 pairs of generally hairless pinnae. There are 8 – 20 pairs of leaflets per pinna. Petiolar glands are usually present at the base of the upper pinnae pairs.
Flowers: The sweetly scented, bright yellow, globose flowers appear in spring and are carried on slender stalks in the axil of the spines.
Fruit: The flat, papery, light brown pods are borne in clusters that ripen in late summer.
Seed: The flattish, dark brown seeds are released when the pods burst open at the end of summer.


Growing regions: Acacia xanthophloea is commonly found growing naturally in the Northern Province, Kwa – Zulu Natal and Mpumalanga.
Growing conditions: The Fever Tree enjoys a sunny aspect and grows really well when planted in a large hole with plenty of compost and regular deep watering.
Best season: Spring
Hardiness: This rewarding tree is moderately drought and frost hardy.
Propagation: Propagation is by seed which germinates easily after being soaked overnight.
Growth rate: Provided the Fever tree is watered regularly the growth rate is very fast, up to 1,5m annually.


The early settlers were the first people to refer to the Acacia xanthophloea as the Fever tree. The habitat of the malaria mosquito is the same as the tree, so on contracting malaria fever they attributed the disease to their proximity to the tree, being unaware that it was in fact the mosquito that carried the disease. The Fever tree is one of our most popular medicinal plants with the bark being used to alleviate fevers. The wood from this tree is heavy and hard and is used as a general purpose timber.