Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Plan to be Water-Wise!

Before we get into some valuable advice regarding water-wise tree’s – we wish to say 
“Welcome to 2011”! 

We hope that all of you have enjoyed a well earned and refreshing break over the festive season and look forward to the opportunity of assisting you with any advice you need, in addition to our outstanding selection of exceptional quality trees. At TreeCo we are truly motivated by helping you to get the best from your landscape! 

At this time of the year it is common for the Cape to experience extreme heat as well as long dry and windy spells.
Many trees become stressed by prolonged exposure to our harsh conditions, so planting trees that are hardy and can withstand these conditions by using water efficiently, is the wisest solution to a healthy, low maintenance and environmentally friendly landscape.

Using drought tolerant trees is always beneficial as they can withstand high heat and low water conditions while still maintaining a moderate growth rate as well as aesthetic and functional qualities.

A wide selection of our beautiful indigenous trees are ideally suited to hot and dry habitats and can generally be easily identified when certain characteristics are taken into account. 

The Characteristics of Water-Wise Trees

Drought tolerant or resistant trees tend to have smaller leaves than their less hardy counterparts and the leaves are usually DISCOUNT CODE TSMD 0080 lighter green or even grey or silvery in colour. The smaller leaves reduce evaporation and assist the plant in conserving moisture.

The roots of drought tolerant trees either spread widely or grow very deep, enabling them to maximise the use of available ground water. An added benefit of this is their ability to stabilise dry and sandy soils.

Some of the many indigenous trees that are both attractive and drought tolerant are Dodonea angustifolia, Olea africana, Searsia pendulina and Searsia lancea as well as a number of the popular and iconic Acacia family such as Acacia karoo and Acacia erioloba to name just a few.

In South Africa, where water is a precious and an increasingly scarce commodity, we need to plan and design our landscapes responsibly, by ensuring that we select trees that are suited to the prevailing conditions, thereby enhancing our environment without placing undue pressure on our valuable resources.

Please feel free to contact Rudi or Leske for any further information and advice.

TreeCo Big Tree Gallery - January 2011

Has YOUR landscape been TREECO'ed?
TreeCo has developed an extemely loyal group of clients who have come to rely on us for the quality and unique character of our trees. Whether you plant one of our 50lt or 1000lt trees, you can be assured that we have taken every measure to ensure that the specimen you invest in, has the best possible chance of survival within your landscape. Our quality translates directly to your image as a professional landscaper, which is a responsibility we take very seriously.
Beyond the quality of our trees lies the all important environmental aspect relating to how our trees are produced and cared for. We do not use harmful pesticides or chemical fertilisers and our trees are encouraged to grow at a natural rate and to a natural shape, so not only are our trees are genuinely stronger and healthier, you know that you are supporting an organisation that is continually taking active steps to reduce our carbon footprint.
When we ask 'Has YOUR landscape been TREECO'ed'?, what we really mean to ask is 'Have you used the best quality trees, produced by an environmentally responsible company to green your world'?

Spectacular Monthly Tree - Harpephyllum caffrum 50kg

Harpephyllum caffrum or Wild plum is a lovely, medium to large semi-deciduous tree with a handsome, dense, spreading crown. This attractive member of the mango family has shiny, dark green, compound leaves that are characteristically grouped at the tips of the branches. The male and female plants are separate. The flowers are small and insignificant but the 20-30mm long red fruits are edible, although they are somewhat sour. The flowers and fruits attract a variety of butterflies, birds and mammals to the garden. Although the Wild plum grows fairly slowly it is a popular shade tree in gardens, parks and for street planting in towns and cities.
Botanical NameHarpephyllum caffrum
Common Name    Wild Plum                 
Bag Size 50kg
Quantity Available 150
Average Tree Height
& Trunk Thickness
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
Looking Good List for January 2011

TreeCo provides our readers with a downloadable, updated Looking Good List every month. 

Please note that should you not find the tree that you are looking for on this list, TreeCo will readily source what you require, on your behalf. Rudi and Leske Neethling personally ensure that all trees supplied by TreeCo, conform to our high quality standards.
Please CLICK HERE to download our latest Looking Good List.
This document is available as a PDF document and will require Adobe Acrobat Reader to view. If you do not have Adobe Acrobat Reader loaded on your computer, please click on the link below which will allow you to download this free program quickly and easily.

Ekebergia capensis (cape ash)

The stately Ekebergia capensis is a large evergreen tree, and is a member of the well represented tropical and sub-tropical Mahogany family of trees and shrubs. This superb tree is often confused with Harpephyllum caffrum which is a member of the Mango family and has stiff, sickle-shaped leaves, whereas the leaves of the Cape ash are drooping and don’t have a watery secretion when a leaf is detached. The sweetly scented flowers of this superb tree attract butterflies and bees to the garden while the berry-like fruit is enjoyed by barbets, bulbuls and mousebirds as well as the magnificent purple crested and Knysna loeries. Although the fruit is rather acid it is perfectly safe for human consumption.
Botanical Name
Ekebergia capensis
Common Name
Cape ash
RSA National Tree No’
This magnificent ornamental shade tree may be too large for an ordinary city garden, but will make a superb specimen tree in a larger garden where it will not only provide shade, but will attract a diversity of wildlife as well. Ekebergia capensis makes a stunning street tree and has been extensively used in cities where it provides welcome relief from the heat when planted along hot sidewalks and streets as well as in public parking areas, city parks and open spaces. As this lovely tree grows rather fast when given sufficient water, a shady area can be created in a relatively short time.
10m – 15m
Growth Habit
Ekebergia capensis grows naturally from high altitude evergreen and riverine forest, and right down to sea level.
The bark of the Cape ash is rough and ranges in colour from light grey to almost black. There is some buttressing at the base of more mature trees.
The glossy green, compound leaves are unequally pinnate with 9 – 13 leaflets per leaf and often have a pinkish tinge at the edges. 
The sweetly scented, white to pinkish flowers are carried on lax axillary panicles from September to November.
The subglobose, fleshy, berry-like fruit starts out green then gradually turns pink and ripens to a bright red in February and March.
Each fruit contains 4 small dark seeds.
Growing regions
Ekebergia capensis grows from the Eastern Cape northwards through Kwa-Zulu Natal, Mocambique, Zimbabwe and as far north as Ethiopia and the DRC.
Growing conditions
This impressive tree grows best when planted in a large hole with plenty of compost in full sun. Water generously and it will grow quickly in warm parts of the country.
Best season
The Cape ash prefers adequate water but can tolerate dry conditions for a short while. The tree tolerates light frost but is sensitive to heavy frost.
This lovely tree propagates readily from seed but a quicker, easier method is from hardwood cuttings or truncheons planted directly into the ground.
Growth rate
If given the right conditions the Cape ash grows very fast but will grow more slowly in less favourable conditions.
The Cape ash is well known for the attractive, pale wood which is often used to make beautiful furniture. Many parts of the tree are used medicinally. The bark is used as an emetic as well as for treating dysentery. The roots are used for ailments such as headaches, heart burn and coughs while the leaves are used for intestinal worms. Some parts of the tree are traditionally used to protect the local chief from witchcraft.
                  E. capensis Bark                   E. capensis Fruit                E. capensis Flowers