Capparis mitchellii – Native Orange

A small tree from Western New South Wales, it is a good bush tucker plant. It grows to around six to eight metres high, and likes a sandy to clay loam soil with very good drainage in a sunny spot. Related to capers, it has large fluffy white to cream flowers followed by green fruit. When the fruit ripens, the skin goes a dull purple to orange colour. The flesh becomes yellow to orange and soft, with a fragrant smell. It is eaten raw, or used in cooking, and is high in Vitamin C. The seeds are peppery, so are usually discarded. The plant is slow growing, thorny, and has dull grey green leaves and dark furrowed bark. Drought and frost tolerant, but doesn’t like humidity.

Scientific Name:Capparis mitchellii
Common Name:Native Orange
Other Common Names:Native Pomegranate, Bumble Tree
Plant Type:Small tree
Height:5 ~ 8 metres
Width:4 ~ 6 metres
Flower Colour:White, Cream
Flowering Time:All year
Ph Level:Acid, Neutral, Alkaline
Soil Type:Sandy, Sandy loam, Clay loam, Poor soil
Plant Environment:Drought resistant
Climate Zone:Warm temperate, Cool temperate, Mediterranean, Semi-arid, Arid
Light:Sunny, Light shade
Growth Habit:Evergreen, Spreading
Soil Moisture:Dry, Well-drained
Propagation Method:Seed
Frost Tolerance:Tolerates light frost
Plant Usage:Screen, Windbreak
Special Uses:Edible, Decorative fruit
Attracts Wildlife:Bees, Seed eating birds, Other insects






Once you have found the plant that you want, the next step is to find where to get it. Visit or ring your favourite nursery to see if they have it in stock. If they don’t, they may be able to order it in for you.  Specialist nurseries are also able to give great advice, and if they don’t have the plant you want, they can often suggest an alternative to you. Below is a list of our favourite specialist nurseries, and some who do mail order. Click on the links for their details-


The Wildflower Place Erina – NSW 


Sydney Wildflower Nursery – NSW


Newcastle Wildflower Nursery – NSW


Cool Country Natives – ACT


Wimmera Native Nursery – Victoria


Zanthorrea Nursery – Perth WA


Manuka Native Nursery – South Australia


Sydney Wildflower Nursery – mail order


The Native Shop – mail order




Angus recommends Bush Tucker fertiliser for native plants.