Dombeya cymosa is a semi-deciduous large shrub or small tree, with a gracefully drooping crown and small, dark green, thinly textured foliage. The leaves turn reddish to yellow during autumn, and the bark of the tree is smooth with a pale whitish to brown colour. Clusters of small, white, sweetly scented flowers are produced from March to September followed by small, pale brown fruits.
The Natal wild pear is a slow to moderate grower that is sensitive to frost when young, requiring protection. Older plants might be burnt by frost, but recovers in spring. The tree grows in semi-shade and full sun and can reach a height of 2 – 4 m in Gauteng.
This ornamental, indigenous tree is ideal for small gardens and for planting in small groves. In addition, Dombeya cymosa is a host plant for various butterfly species and excellent honey is produced from the flowers!