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A picture of a Waterberry


Syzygium cordatum

Also known as

Water Tree, Waterwood, Waterbessie (Afr.), Motlho, Muhlwa

Syzygium cordatum (9774260235) by Ton Rulkens (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Full Sun
Easy care
Frequent watering


USDA zone


Minimum temperature

Expected size









  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

To grow this species take fresh fruits, clean off the fleshy outer covering and sow the greenish looking seeds in damp well drained soil or sand.

More images of Waterberry

A photo of Waterberry
A photo of Waterberry
A photo of Waterberry
A photo of Waterberry
A photo of Waterberry

Waterberry Overview

Syzygium cordatum is an evergreen, water-loving tree species in the Myrtaceae family. It is often found near streams, on forest margins or in swampy spots and grows best in moist to wet soil. It typically grows to between 8-15m in height, producing circular to elliptical-shaped leaves. Young foliage has a red tinge, developing to a blue-green colouring on the upper surface and a pale green shade on the underside. Showy flowers are white-pink in colour, scented and they are fluffy from many stamens, which produce an abundance of nectar, providing sustenance to pollinators and other wildlife. Flowers lead onto oval red-purple berry fruits. ZA Distribution: KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Western Cape.

Common problems with Waterberry

Generally problem free.

    Waterberry Companion Plants

    Under-plant with water loving plants.

    How to propagate Waterberry


    Sow seed in a seed trays with well-drained soil and cover seeds with a thin layer of soil. Water well and keep in a well-ventilated area. Treat seeds with fungicide before sowing.

    Special features of Waterberry

    Attracts birds

    Birds feed on the berry fruits.

    Attracts useful insects

    Attracts bees

    Wet sites

    Will grow in damp sites near water.

    Attracts butterflies

    Attracts bees

    Other uses of Waterberry


    In central Africa the tree is known as a remedy for stomach ache and diarrhoea. It is also used to treat respiratory ailments and tuberculosis.


    The fleshy fruit is edible, slightly acid in flavour, and is eaten by children, monkeys, bush-babies and birds. The berries are also used to sometimes make an alcoholic drink.



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