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Nauclea latifolia - Sm.

Common Name African Peach
Family Rubiaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Dry savannah and thickets[307 ]. A savannah shrub sometimes found in undisturbed fringing forest and closed savannah woodland[303 ].
Range West tropical Africa - Ghana to Gabon and DR Congo.
Edibility Rating    (3 of 5)
Other Uses    (2 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (4 of 5)
Tender Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Nauclea latifolia African Peach
Nauclea latifolia African Peach
scott.zona - Flickr


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African Peach or Nauclea latifolia is a deciduous flowering plant with an open canopy and growing up to 9 m tall. It has small branches that are thick and drooping. The bark is dark gray, fibrous, and cracked. The leaves are shiny green, oval, and rounded at the base but pointed at the tip. The flowers are white-yellow and occur in a single rounded heads. It can be cooked and consumed as vegetable. The fruit is a compound fruit, red or pinkish, and round consisting of very small seeds. Its pulp is deep red, watery, and has a sweet flavor. African Peach is used against various medical conditions such as diabetes, fever, indigestion, and cough. It can also be used as windbreak and/or planted for soil conservation. Leaves can be used as mulch and small twigs as chewing sticks. Roots yield yellow dye. Wood is termite-resistant and used for inlay work and fuel.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of lolypop
Nauclea latifolia is a deciduous Tree growing to 10 m (32ft) by 10 m (32ft) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 10. The flowers are pollinated by Bees, Butterflies.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Cephalina esculenta (Afzel. ex Sabine) Schumach. & Thonn. Nauclea esculenta (Afzel. ex Sabine) Merr.


Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers  Fruit
Edible Uses:

Fruit - raw[301 ]. The pulp is deep red, watery, sweet with a taste of ripe apple[307 ]. The fruit is said to resemble a strawberry in taste and texture[301 ]. The globose fruit is about 8cm in diameter[307 ]. Flower heads - cooked and eaten as a vegetable[46 , 301 ].

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Used in the treatment of diabetes[303 , 307 ]. The root is febrifuge and tonic[46 ]. It is used in the treatment of fevers, indigestion[46 ]. The fruit is eaten as a cure for coughs[303 ]. The bark and roots of the plant contain more than 1% of an opioid that is clinically identical to the analgesic drug 'tramadol'. It can be extracted in a cost-effective way to provide an economical source of this widely used analgesic[897 ]. Extracts of the plant have exhibited activity against Escherichia coli, Shigella flexneri, Salmonella typhi and Staphylococcus aureus (which are responsible for gastroenteritis in children)[303 ]. The alkaloid strictosamine is obtained from the roots, leaves and stem bark[303 ].

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Other Uses

Agroforestry Uses: A suitable species for planting schemes for conservation and soil stabilization[303 ]. The tree offers shade and acts as a windbreak[303 ]. It is used as a live stake to provide barriers in farms[303 ]. The leaves are used as a mulch[303 ]. Other Uses Small twigs are used as chewing sticks[307 ]. The bark is a source of tannins[303 ]. A yellow dye is obtained from the roots[46 ]. The heartwood is dark red-brown, hard and moderately heavy[307 ]. The wood is resistant to termites[303 ]. It is used for inlay work[307 ]. The wood is used for fuel[303 ].

Special Uses

Cultivation details

Plants grow in hot tropical climates, where they are found at elevations from sea level to around 200 metres[303 , 335 ]. They grow best in areas where the mean annual temperature is around 27°c[303 ]. They succeed in a range of moisture conditions from fairly dry savannah to moist forest[335 ], preferring a mean annual rainfall around 2,700mm[303 ]. Plants are tolerant of a range of soils, preferring a position in full sun[307 ]. Established plants are very drought tolerant[307 ]. Seedlings commence fruiting when about 5 - 6 years old[335 ]. The flowers are extremely fragrant[307 ]. Plants respond well to coppicing[303 ].

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Seed - usually sown in situ[303 ]. The seed is said to germinate more quickly and reliably if it first passes through the gut of a baboon[303 , 307 ]. Cuttings of greenwood. Layering.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

African Peach, Angatu, Chipoka, Dhiot, Ebolo, Goat, Gongan, Gounge, Guinea peach, Karmadodah, Kwomo, Logotomic, Miaar, Monyo, Mutma, Nauclea, Negro-peach, Pincushion, Rata-bakmi, Sukisia, african cinchona, african quinine, akabi awotso, banampe, bari, baro, bati country fi g, brampe, country fig, country-fig, daindaté, dikabiatso, doundake, doundaké, ebele, ebeliodole, ebolo, edoil, egbesi, egbessi root, ekomokoi, ekusiawa, eomokoi, eutukidole, galun gun, guinea peach, guineapeach fathead tree, gulun gun, hwene hwenti, kankanu, katama, kina du rio nunez, kisia, kuru kuntu, kusia, lago, molo, munyu, mutamatama, mutma, nauclea, negro peach, nemo, njimo, nyimo, opepe, osupuwa, owentin, oyefa oshwefa, oyefa tshofa, peachroot, peyae biasa, pêcher africain, sarcocephalus latifolius, sierra leone peach, sierra leone-peach, supaka, tafashia, tafashia. telede, tshofa tshuru, woacroolie root, wuacruli.

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Equatorial Guinea; Angola; Benin; Burkina Faso; Cameroon; Central African Republic; Chad; Congo; Congo, The Democratic Republic of the; Côte d'Ivoire; Ethiopia; Gabon; Gambia; Ghana; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Kenya; Liberia; Mali; Mauritania; Nigeria; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Togo; Uganda; Sao Tomé and Principe. Africa, Angola, Asia, Central Africa, East Africa, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Malaysia, Nigeria, SE Asia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Uganda, West Africa,

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

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