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|The distinctively coarse, granulated bark|
Combretum imberbe (Leadwood, Afrikaans: Hardekool, Sotho: Mohwelere-tšhipi, Tsonga: Motswiri, Zulu: Impondondlovu) is a protected tree in South Africa. The Leadwood tree is a semi-deciduous plant found from KwaZulu-Natal Province of South Africa in the south to Tanzania in the north. It normally grows up to 20 metres (66 feet) tall. The Leadwood tree has a spreading, rather sparse, roundish to slightly umbrella-shaped crown and a single, thick trunk, with distinctive bark breaking up into fairly regular rectangular blocks. Radiocarbon dating, done in South Africa, has established that a Leadwood tree can live up to 1040 +/-70 years and subsequently remain standing for years after the tree has died.
- The wood is very hard, difficult to work, and termite resistant. It was once used for railway sleepers and is now prized as wood for ornamental work and furniture.
- It burns very slowly with intense heat, and is often used for a fire which is intended to burn all night in order to keep wild animals at bay. It is sometimes used in a barbecue to provide a hot, long-lasting flame.
- The ashes are used as whitewash for painting walls of kraal huts.
- The ashes can also be used as toothpaste when mixed into a paste with water
- "Protected Trees". Department of Water Affairs and Forestry, Republic of South Africa. Retrieved 13 June 2013.
- "Combretum imberbe". PlantzAfrika. Retrieved 2010-01-23.