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Tree Medicines of the Garden Route: Camphor Bush

Tree Medicines of the Garden Route - Camphor Bush - Precious Tree Project NPO

Scientific name: Tarchonanthus camphoratus L.
Family: Asteraceae.
Common names: Camphor Bush (English), Wildekanferbos (Afrikaans), Moologa (Venda), Mofahlana (S.Sotho), Igqeba Emlimhlophe (Zulu), Mofathla (Tsonga).

The heavily scented Tarchonanthus camphoratus is a semi-deciduous small tree that grows mostly in large uniform groups, with the tendency to grow larger and more dense when in the presence of other trees. It is widely distributed in a variety of habitats – including forests, thickets of bushveld, grassland and semi-desert regions – across southern parts of Africa, from the southern Cape to Kenya. Drought resistant and fast growing, the Camphor Bush is heavily relied on by game as a source of food in extremely dry periods.


a. Bear in mind when harvesting any indigenous tree to do so sustainably. Different trees and different parts of a tree have their own harvesting methods and periods throughout the year. The South African National Biodiversity Institute has informative harvesting tips on their website (SANBI link below).

b. As with any medication, when using plants for their medicinal values it is recommended that you seek professional guidance from a natural health practitioner and undertake appropriate research before use.

For additional information on germination, propagation, ecology, maintenance, etc. of indigenous SA trees, go to:

Click here if you would like to sponsor a Camphor Bush and help grow a mini forest!

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