Myrtus communis (Bekele-Tesemma, 2007)

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Myrica salicifolia
Bekele-Tesemma, Useful trees and shrubs for Ethiopia, 2007
Myrtus communis (Bekele-Tesemma, 2007)
Nuxia congesta

Myrtus communis Myrtaceae Indigenous

Common names

  • English: Common myrtle, Myrtle bush
  • Amargna: Ades
  • Gamogna: Ades
  • Oromugna: Addisa, Qodo


A shrub that grows in Moist and Wet Kolla and Weyna Dega agroclimatic zones in Gonder, Harerge, Welo and Shoa, 700– 2,500 m.


Flavouring, perfume, incense (smoke used for pleasant scent in rooms, especially during the traditional coffee ceremony).


A leafy evergreen shrub 3–5 m high.

  • LEAVES: Simple and opposite, leathery and shiny, oval and sharply tipped to 5 cm long, the base rounded. When crushed sweet-scented oil is released from special cells.
  • FLOWERS: Sweet scented, white with 5 petals around many white stamens, to 3 cm across.
  • FRUIT: A rounded blueblack berry, 1 cm or less.


Seedlings, cuttings.


Treatment: Not necessary.


Coppicing to encourage branching and more leaf production.


Widely cultivated since ancient times. In Ethiopia it is used for perfuming butter to be used in hair dressing, as an additive to ‘injera’, a local bread made from tef.