Combretum kraussii is a fast growing, deciduous to semi-deciduous, small tree with glossy dark green leaves that turn vivid red and purple in autumn. Flowers are small, white, sweetly scented puffballs that attract both birds and insects. The bark is dark grey in colour and has some furrows. This tree has a neat shape and is one of our most decorative trees. Height can vary between 4 and 10m.
Its distribution stretches from Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo to Mpumalanga. Combretum kraussii is found growing naturally on rocky hillsides, evergreen forests, wooded valleys, open woodlands and also on mountain grasslands.
The Forest Bushwillow deserves a spot in any grassland, savanna or forest garden. It prefers a mild to warm climate and once established it is reasonably frost and drought resistant. Protect from frost when young.
It’s beautiful autumn colour persist on the tree all winter adding a splash of colour. It is truly a tree for all seasons.
Combretum kraussii tolerates shade well and can be grown in a large container on a patio. Trim to keep a neat shape. It is also an ideal shade tree for gardens, pavements and along driveways or on paved areas as its root system is non-invasive.