Ochna natalitia is a large, semi-deciduous shrub or small tree characterised by glossy, serrated leaves that flush red in spring. It can reach an average height of 2-3 m and branches close to ground level. It is found growing naturally in forest margins of Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, Limpopo and North west.
Ochna natalitia is a shrub for sunny or semi-shade conditions. This tree can withstand light frost and moderate drought and does best where summers are warm and rainfall high.
This beautiful plant deserves pride of place in any garden with its profuse, sweetly scented, yellow flowers (some hanging from the tips of branches) and black fruit on an enlarged red calyx. The seeds attract birds to the garden. Low branching makes it an ideal screening tree with floral accents during spring and summer.Due to its non-invasive root system, Ochna natalitia is ideal for limited spaces like small gardens and courtyards.
The Natal plane is waterwise once established and can grow well in a wide range of soil types although humus rich soils are the best for its growth.
Ochna natalitia grows very well in containers in sun or semi- shade areas.