Peltophorum africanum

Botanical Name

Peltophorum africanum Sonder

Common Name(s)

  • African wattle
  • blackwood
  • muzeze (Shona)
  • umsehla (Ndebele)

Legume Clades

Native Geographic Range

  • Southern Africa

IUCN Status

Growth Form

small tree

Cultivation Status in AZ

Rarely cultivated


Evergreen trees to 33 ft (10 m) high with stems arising from near the ground and forming a rounded canopy. The bark is brownish gray and slightly rough. Leaves are bipinnate with 4--7 pairs of pinnae. Each pinna has 10--22 pairs of leaflets. Showy yellow flowers are produced in inflorescences during late spring and summer.


Native to southern Africa where it occurs in savanna habitats.


The wood has been used for carving.


Not presently available from nurseries in Arizona. African wattle makes an excellent shade tree for smaller spaces. The showy flowers are produced over several months. Established plants require infrequent irrigation. This species is hardy to about 20° F (-6.5° C). Frozen plants recover rapidly the following year though dead limbs should be removed. This tree produces some leaf litter and should not be sited near pools.