Commiphora incisa


Commiphora candidula


Commiphora incisa is native to Somalia, but can also be found in other states of eastern Africa, such as Eritrea, Ethiopia, Zambia, Malawi, Saudi Arabia. This plant lives in semi-arid grasslands.


Commiphora incisa, also called Commiphora candidula by botanists, is a small tree, with the appearance and bearing of a shrub, which can reach 6 meters in height in its natural environment. In the world of ornamental plant nurseries it is instead a perfect bonsai! It is distinguished by its bark that comes off easily in paper-like layers. It is also full of thorns, be careful when handling it! The leaves are composed: this means that each of them is composed of the so-called “leaflets”. In the case of C. incisa the leaflets are 3.

Like the other Commiphoras, C. incisa is a caudiciform: this means that it has a caudex. The caudex is an enlarged organ of some plants that live in inhospitable environments and must always have a “supply” of water and nutrients to face the dry seasons or unfavorable periods.


Commiphora incisa grows vigorously and will not give you any problems if you place it in a bright location and in a well-drained substrate. The main cause of failure in the cultivation of this sapling is the excessive amount of water. Commiphora incisa should in fact receive water about every 3-4 days in spring and summer, or their growing season, while, with the arrival of winter, the water supply must be reduced until it is completely suspended. When the plant wants to tell you that it is thirsty, the caudex becomes smaller and wrinkled. Due to its not very large roots Commiphora incisa can also be planted in not very deep pots.


The propagation of Commiphora incisa occurs by cuttings or even from seed.


The name “Commiphora” comes from the Greek kommi, “gum” and “phorus”, hole. Many species of Commiphora in fact form gummy resins such as Mecca balsam and myrrh (extracted from C. myrrha), which are widely used in cosmetics and the production of incense.

All Commiphora produce gummy resins: some of these are also used in cosmetics!

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