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biodiversity explorer

the web of life in southern Africa

Genus: Ocotea (stinkwood genus)

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > magnoliids > Order: Laurales > Family: Lauraceae

About 300 species worldwide (mainly tropical and subtropical America, also Madagascar, Africa and one in the Canary Islands), of which two are native to southern Africa and a further species is cultivated in the region.

Species native to southern Africa

List from Plants of Southern Africa - an Online Checklist (SANBI), Flora of Zimbabwe and Flora of Mozambique.

Ocotea bullata (Stinkwood)

Native to Afromontane forests of South Africa from Cape Town to Limpopo.

Ocotea kenyensis (Transvaal stinkwood)

Native distribution includes Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland and South Africa (and Limpopo, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape).

Species cultivated in southern Africa

Information from Glen (2002).

Ocotea porosa (Imbuia)



  • Glen, H.F. 2002. Cultivated plants of southern Africa. Jacana, Johannesburg.

  • Jordaan, M. 2003. Lauraceae. In Germishuizen, G. & Meyer, N.L. (eds), Plants of southern Africa: an annotated checklist. Strelitzia 14: 600-601. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.