Thespesia garckeana

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Thespesia garckeana
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Malvales
Family: Malvaceae
Genus: Thespesia
Species: T. garckeana
Binomial name
Thespesia garckeana
F.Hoffm.(Exell & Hillc.)

Thespesia garckeana (also known by its synonym Azanza garckeana) is a tree in the family Malvaceae, found throughout the warmer parts of Southern Africa in wooded grasslands, open woodland and thickets. It grows naturally over a range of altitudes from 1000 to 2000 m above sea level, from semi-arid areas to areas of higher rainfall. T. garckeana is often found on or near termite mounds in old fields.

Common names: African chewing gum, snot apple, tree hibiscus, mutohwe (Shona), nkole (Sri Lanka)


  • The whole fruit except the seeds is chewed like gum, producing a sweet glutinous slime. The fruit is also used as a syrup and soup.
  • The sap wood is yellow and the heart wood is a deep brown. It is easily worked but generally only suitable for small building needs, tool handles, oxen yokes, and domestic items such as spoons.
  • The leaves of T. garckeana have many uses including green manure and mulch. The leaves also provide an often used fodder.

See also[edit]