Leaves narrow-ovate to oblong-ovate, to 15 cm long, apex pointed, base rounded or more or less hearshaped, margins toothed, upper surface sparsely hairy, lower surface with brownish hairs; petiole mostly 5-10 mm long.
Photo: Robert Whyte Inset by Mark Crocker shows whiteish, greenish and purple fruit.
Because this plant is in the same family as Lantana, it is sometimes cited as a “Lantana replacement”. It is not as vigorous or drought-tolerant, nor is it as spiky, so it may not be a good replacement on its own, but deserves to be in the mix with other plants replacement species like Bursaria, Alyxia, Carissa, Maclura, Orange Thorn and other hardy, prickly plants.
Flower buds. Photo: Robert Whyte
Flower close up. Photo: Robert Whyte
The whole plant is analgesic, antiphlogistic (reduces fever by lowering the body temperature from a raised state) and haemostatic (acting to arrest bleeding or hemorrhage). A decoction has been used in the treatment of haemoptysis (coughing up blood from the respiratory tract), haematemesis (vomiting blood), nose bleed, haematuria (the presence of blood in the urine), traumatic bleeding, traumatic injuries and rheumatoid arthritis. The whole plant can be crushed for external applications to wounds. (A Barefoot Doctors Manual. Running Press ISBN 0-914294-92-X, Herbal from China).
Fruit. Photo: Robert Whyte