Previous species
Previous Species

Next Species
Next Species

Home Page

Order CD-ROMs from the site

Tell a Friend

Gardening Books

Gardening Catalogs


Scientific Name: Garcinia livingstonei T. Anders.
Family: Clusiaceae
Imbe (Garcinia  livingstonei)
Picture from Tropica Mango Nurseries
Recommended Temperature Zone:
USDA: 10

Frost Tolerance: Tender in Phoenix, leaf damage at 32 F (0 C), limb damage at 28 F( -2 C)

Sun Exposure: Full sun to light shade

Origin: East Africa

Growth Habits: Bush or small tree up to 15-20 feet (4-6 m) generally smaller

Watering Needs: Occasional deep watering during the year, regular water the hot summer months

Propagation: seed, air layer or grafting

This small tree of east Africa bears an edible plum like fruit. Although the trees may reach a height of 15 to 20 feet, they are usually lower and have several trunks, which arch away from the main axis and produce a number of short, thick, side branches. The trees are often used as landscape subjects because of their unusual form. The oblong dark-green leaves are leathery in texture and have white veins. They measure from 4 to 6 inches long (10 to 5 cm) by 1 to 2 inches wide (2.5 to 5 cm).

Cultural Practices:
The trees are not particular in their soil requirements but respond to good culture.

Blooming Habits:
Greenish yellow flowers are produced in clusters along the branches in June.
The fruit ripens to a bright orange color in August and is gone in 2 weeks. It measures 1.5 to 2 inches in length (2-3 cm) and 1 to 2 inches in diameter (3-5 cm). While usually 1-seeded an occasional fruit produces 2 seeds. A thin layer of acid-sweet watery pulp surrounds the seed. The rather tender skin tends to prevent packing and shipping of the fruit, but it deserves to be more widely cultivated as a home fruit.

Fruiting Habits:

Sponsors: Michigan Bulb - 120 x 60 Lawns Banner! Gurney's 120 x 60 A

We do get a small commission out of these sponsors that helps financing the website.  Let us know if you are satisfied or dissatisfied of their services, since obviously we are trying to advertise only for reputable garden supply companies.  They might be helpful to get plants not generally available at the local garden center, getting a new and unusual gardening tool or get a discount Better Homes and Gardens magazine subscription.


Desert Tropicals Home Page | List of All the Plants | More in the Clusiaceae family | Tell your friends about this page

Desert-Tropicals is dedicated to provide gardening advice, gardening ideas, and information about flower of all kind for landscape and collections. We try to check carefully the identification of the plants on the illustrations as well as the other information from the page, but occasionally errors do occur. if you notice anything that needs to be changed please contact us. Thanks.

1998-2005 Philippe Faucon, All Rights Reserved.