Englerophytum magalismontanum, commonly the Transvaal milkplum and previously scientifically Bequaertiodendron magalismontanum, is more often a shrub than a tree when growing in the open. It reaches heights from 3 m to 10 m when stimulated by surrounding vegetation and growing conditions (SA Tree List No. 581).
The more common common name is the Afrikaans stamvrug (stem fruit). This name is soon learnt by those that acquire the taste for these sweet, red fruits, popular in their summer season. Rich in vitamin C, the animal, bird and human stamvrug consumers are motivated by other considerations than nutritional details.
Sangomas and other traditional healers use the fruits and roots of the plant in infusions for treating certain ailments. When roots and bark become medicinally important, risk multiplies for the plant in question. This species is fortunately not considered to be threatened in its habitat early in the twenty first century.
Those that know E. magalismontanum well as a small, hardy shrub adapted to harsh conditions, e.g. on top of the Magaliesberg for which it is named, marvel at the big tree it sometimes becomes in the kloofs by the popular mountain streams.
The species distribution is widespread in the provinces north of the Vaal River, northern KwaZulu-Natal and tropical Africa.
The habitat is rocky outcrops and exposed hills where shrub-size is achieved, as well as river banks, wooded ravines and forests where stamvrug reach tree size. The species is not considered to be threatened in its habitat early in the twenty first century (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Schmidt, et al, 2002; www.redlist.sanbi.org).