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Amangwe azidlayo

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Family: Brassicaceae

Scientific name: Cadaba natalensis

Authority: Sond.

Zulu names: amangwamnyama, amangwe azidlayo, amangwezidala, amangwe amnyama, umanzimane, uphaphane

Other names: green leaved wormbush, Natal worm bush (English), groenblaarwurmbos, Natalwurmbos (Afrikaans)

Plant description: C. natalensis is a shrub that grows to 4 m in height. It has dark green leaves with white to pale flowers. The shrub is not endemic to South Africa, but can be found growing in dry forests, savannah, and woodlands in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu Natal, Limpopo, and Mpumalanga province as well as in Swaziland, and southern Mozambique.   


  • The plant is burnt and the black ashes are ground to powder to make insizi, a powder medicine used for (ukugcaba) inoculation against sickness and evil. 
  • The roots are used to treat pulmonary infection such as chest pains, colds, coughs, fever, and tuberculosis (TB).
  • The roots are used as an emetic to induce vomiting.
  • The roots are used to treat abdominal pain and digestive problems.
  • The roots are used to treat diabetes.
  • The roots are used to stimulate or increase menstrual flow.
  • The plant is used to treat heart problems and emmenagogue.
  • The plant is used to treat intoxication. 

Safety precaution:

Using traditional medicine responsibly can enhance your overall health and well-being. Misuse and abuse can lead to complications. You can inquire about the correct use of traditional medicine from a knowledgeable herbalist and practitioner. You can also visit or email: to learn more about traditional medicine

References and further reading: 

  • Boon, R. 2010. Pooley’s Trees of eastern South Africa. Flora and Fauna Publications Trust, Durban.
  • Foden, W. & Potter, L. 2005. Cadaba natalensis Sond. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2023/04/27
  • Hutchings, A., Scott, A.H., Lewis, G., and Cunningham, A., 1996. Zulu medicinal plants. Natal University Press, Pietermaritzburg. 
  • Raimondo, D., von Staden, L., Foden, W., Victor, J.E., Helme, N.A., Turner, R.C., Kamundi, D.A. and Manyama, P.A. 2009. Red List of South African Plants. Strelitzia 25. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.
  • Thalisson Souza, 2022, Oxazolidin-2-one and Oxazolidine-2-thiones from Incó (Neocalyptrocalyx longifolium) an endemic species of Brazilian northeastern. In: 7th Brazilian Conference on Natural Product/ XXXIII RESEM Proceedings. Campinas: Galoá. 2019. Available from:  <>. Accessed: 26 Feb. 2023.

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