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A picture of a Natal Plum

Natal Plum

Carissa macrocarpa

Also known as

Amatungulu, Big Num-Num

Photo by patymarie81 (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size









  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

Harvest the fruits once mature and good color has developed. This occurs roughly two years after it was planted. Be delicate when picking the fruits as they bruise easily and use as fresh as possible.

More images of Natal Plum

A photo of Natal Plum
A photo of Natal Plum
A photo of Natal Plum
A photo of Natal Plum
A photo of Natal Plum

Natal Plum Overview

The Natal Plum is a dense thorny evergreen shrub to small tree. The oval, pink or red fruit is edible and rich in Vitamin C, magnesium and phosphorous and follows pretty fragrant white starry flowers. It may also, in addition to its sweet fruit and sweetly scented flowers, double as a neat security hedge. It is easy to grow in coastal regions and an option for xeriscaping and windy areas.

Common problems with Natal Plum

Diseases include bacterial, fungal and viral infections, but usually plants are problem-free.

How to propagate Natal Plum


The seed is best sown fresh or in the spring. Keep moist until well-rooted.


Take 10-15cm cuttings in Spring or Autumn.

Special features of Natal Plum

Attracts birds

The fruit is a food source for many birds and other animals too!

Attracts useful insects

Bees love to visit the flowers.

Drought resistant

Once established, the plant can withstand dry spells and wind.

Hedge plant

Effective evergreen hedge with thorns makes it an effective security fence. it is often clipped in a more formal form too!

Attractive flowers

White fragrant star-shaped flowers with five petals.

Attractive leaves

Glossy green leaves.

Attractive fruits

The fruit is a glossy pinkish red colour. It is edible and is highly nutritional.

Attracts butterflies

Wind break

Attracts bees

Other uses of Natal Plum

Ornamental, foliage, fruit, fragrance, greenhouse, hedge or screen


The fruit is wonderful fresh or made into a preserve.


Summer Flowering Shrubs

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