Also known as Drolpeer the Dombeya rotundifolia, or Wild Pear, is a small fast growing deciduous tree found in various bushveld habitats. In optimum conditions it has a superb pollen value and is known to stimulate early brood, while also supporting honey bees with a medium source of nectar.
Expect flowering July through November from this amazing tree, with its fire-resistant bark not only suitable for making rope fibre and its flowers used as a love potion, the plant has various medicinal uses too. In southern Africa infusions of root, leaves, stems, the wood and bark, are used to treat stomach problems, ulcers, hemorrhoids and diarrhea, with the bark being made into a remedy for chest ailments, palpitations and fever. It can also be used to bring on labour and ward off nausea in pregnancy.
Growing up to 10m tall, it’s great on farms and nature reserves as the wild life browse from it, with farmers making use of the wood for poles as it is termite resistant. If you are into bonsai’s then this is one tree worth talking to, with reports of developing corky bark and reduced leaf size after 2 – 3 years.
Home territory of the Wild Pear? Look out for it in KwaZulu-Natal & the Northern Provinces, as well as in surrounding countries of Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia.
WILD PEAR BEE PLANT VALUE N0-2 AND P0-4
Saving our bees is not just about making less toxic environments for them. We also need to focus on what we feed them. Like us they need a balanced diet. A healthy spread of pollen and nectar from a good diverse selection of flowers to choose from. From these flowers they forge for protein from pollen and they get their carbohydrates, sugars, from nectar. Bee-effective and plant Good Bee Food, for you and your honey bees.
Honey bee visits Wild Pear: image ©Colyn Serfontein, Nelspruit. Ref: sanbi.org / Beeplants of South Africa, M.F. Johannsmeier