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HORSERADISH TREE Syn. DRUMSTICK TREE GROWING INFORMATION
© Frances Michaels
BOTANICAL NAME: Moringa oleifera
Horseradish Tree syn Drumstick Tree; Ben Tree; Miracle Tree; Moringa
Fast-growing, ornamental and deciduous; 8 m high with a drooping spread of 3 m. The stem is erect, with soft wood and
corky bark; the leaves are fern-like and 50 cm long. The flowers are white and fragrant. The fruit is pod-like
'drumsticks' 30 cm long. Moringa is drought-tolerant and requires a well-drained soil. Moringa grows well in semi-arid
zones and on marginal soils, as well as high rainfall areas and fertile soils. It is suitable for subtropical and
the pungent root is used as a substitute for horseradish, eaten as a vegetable or
pickled. The young foliage and flowers are a ready source of vitamins A and C as well as calcium, phosphorus; the leaves
contain up to 38% protein. Leaves should always be cooked - add them to soups, stews, curries and pickles. The immature
pods are cooked and curried like okra. Young seeds are used as a vegetable, mature seeds can be roasted and eaten like
peanuts. An edible oil, 'ben oil', is expressed from the seeds, used in salads and for lubricating delicate machinery.
nectar source for bees.
provides fuel and a raw material for cellophane and textile production.
Moringa spp. are commonly used for living fences.
the seeds are used for clarifying water. The powdered suspension added
to the surface of turbid water will bring it to the clarity of tap water within one to two hours, taking bacteria and
other microorganisms with the sediment to the bottom.
Recommended planting time:
plant in spring and summer when the soil temperature reaches
woody cuttings are planted (sloping end up) upright in the soil. Cutting
material should be 2.5 to 4 cm thick and about 20-30 cm long, with 3 buds per cutting. The cuttings root readily and
establish plants easily.
place plants 80 to 140 cm apart.
Not to TAS or WA
SORRY but due to quarantine restrictions between Australian States no plants at all can be ordered
by residents of TAS
. These restrictions
are very important as they prevent the spread of plant pests and diseases. No potatoes, garlic, shallots
or strawberries can be sent to SA
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