The Tassel Berry tree (Antidesma venosum) is called ‘mpungulira’ in Chichewa. This tree grows throughout Malawi, but due to deforestation attributed to the clearing of land for maize production, these trees are becoming harder to find.
If allowed the time and space to grow, these trees can reach up to 15 meters in height. They produce small purple-colored berries which are edible and have a taste similar to mulberries. The fruits ripen at different times, and can often be harvested for up to three months.
This beautiful tree is also suitable for ornamental gardens to provide shade and bee forage, or as in zones 2,3,4, or 5 to provide fodder for animals, firewood, and wood for tools or other projects. The ripe berries can even be used to produce a purplish-red dye.