The erect stem of Heteropyxis canescens is special. It branches fairly high up, displaying spectacular colour changes upon the main trunk. The bark is smooth and silvery grey, flaking in small or large, randomly shaped patches with rounded edges. The exposed underbark is pale orange-brown, sometimes pinkish. Faint ridges mark the grey stem parts where older flakes dropped off earlier (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Schmidt, et al, 2002).