The single, erect trunk of Widdringtonia schwarzii usually becomes bare on its lower part. The tree has fibrous, reddish grey bark that flakes thinly. The redder parts are in picture in the cracks where younger bark is exposed.
The fragrant wood is pale yellow to light brown, finely textured and durable. The wood is also resinous and highly flammable, causing grief to the trees in an era of too frequent veld fires in the distribution range of the species.
In olden times the trees were cut for their attractive timber, a luxury no longer possible and a loss felt by many of those knowing this tree (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Poynton, 1975; iNaturalist; http://pza.sanbi.org; http://treesa.org).