One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A South African shrub with succulent leaves, which is used for fodder during times of drought.
Portulacaria afra, family Portulacaceae
- ‘The spekboom gives good cover to the various browsers on the farm.’
- ‘The more succulent and spiny shrubs such as spekboom and small bitterleaf, which can survive with little moisture and high temperatures, grow inland.’
- ‘However, defoliation during winter has a depressing effect on growth, and so as much resting as possible is advisable in winter, particularly in areas in which spekboom has low vigour.’
- ‘The thick succulent stems of spekboom readily sprout when a freshly-cut branch is simply inserted into soil.’
- ‘Sweet thorn, wild olive, karee species, spekboom, sneezewood, guarri, milky rope, tree fuchsia and many varieties of succulents, vines and creepers are to be found here in abundance.’
Mid 19th century: from Afrikaans, from spek ‘bacon’ + boom ‘tree’.
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