An attractive, ornamental persimmon with lobed, capsule-like fruits. The actual fruit is enclosed in a red ripening, paper sheath, beneath which is sticky pulp containing a few seeds.
A slow growing, evergreen shrub to several feet. The tree is popular in South Africa as an ornamental, owing both to its attractive growth as well as its climate-tolerant nature. It can also be trained into a hedge.
Unknown exact hardiness, but trees seem to be frost hardy and may be freeze hardy to several degrees as well.
Adaptable to a number of environments. Drought tolerant once established.
The fruits are edible but don't have much flavor. Seeds can be roasted and used as a coffee substitute. The wood is used in furniture making and the plant has a number of traditional medicinal uses.
Native through much of Eastern Africa, from the cape at South Africa, north to Ethiopia.
South African Star Apple