Water Tree, Waterwood, Waterbessie (Afr.), Motlho, Muhlwa
Syzygium cordatum is an evergreen, water-loving tree species in the Myrtaceae family. It is often found near streams, on forest margins or in swampy spots and grows best in moist to wet soil. It typically grows to between 8-15m in height, producing circular to elliptical-shaped leaves. Young foliage has a red tinge, developing to a blue-green colouring on the upper surface and a pale green shade on the underside. Showy flowers are white-pink in colour, scented and they are fluffy from many stamens, which produce an abundance of nectar, providing sustenance to pollinators and other wildlife. Flowers lead onto oval red-purple berry fruits. ZA Distribution: KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Western Cape.
To grow this species take fresh fruits, clean off the fleshy outer covering and sow the greenish looking seeds in damp well drained soil or sand.
Sow seed in a seed trays with well-drained soil and cover seeds with a thin layer of soil. Water well and keep in a well-ventilated area. Treat seeds with fungicide before sowing.
Birds feed on the berry fruits.
Attracts useful insects
Will grow in damp sites near water.
Africa, Mozambique, South Africa, Eastern Cape, Kwazulu Natal
Full Sun, Partial Shade, Partial Sun
Soil PH preference
In central Africa the tree is known as a remedy for stomach ache and diarrhoea. It is also used to treat respiratory ailments and tuberculosis.
The fleshy fruit is edible, slightly acid in flavour, and is eaten by children, monkeys, bush-babies and birds. The berries are also used to sometimes make an alcoholic drink.
Generally problem free.
Under-plant with water loving plants.