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Useful Tropical Plants

Albizia gummifera

(J.F.Gmel.) C.A.Sm.

Fabaceae

+ Synonyms

Albizia fastigiata (E. Mey.) Oliv.

Albizia laevicorticata Zimm.

Albizia sassa (Willd.) Chiov.

Albizia sassa (Willd.) J.F. Macbr.

Feuilleea sassa (Willd.) Kuntze

Inga sassa Willd.

Mimosa sassa (Baillon ex Drake) Poir.

Sassa gummifera J.F.Gmel.

Common Name:

Albizia gummifera
Flowers and leaves
Photograph by: Scamperdale
Creative Commons License

General Information

Albizia gummifera is a deciduous tree with a flattened, open crown, growing up to 30 metres tall. The straight, cylindrical bole can be up to 100cm in diameter; it is usually without buttresses or with small, thick buttresses[
299
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Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
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Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
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Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of wood. It is grown as a shade tree in plantations and is also often grown as an ornamental[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
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Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Known Hazards

The wood dust is aromatic and peppery. It may cause irritation to the nose and throat of sawmill workers[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
,
1309
Title
The Leguminosae; A Source Book of Characteristics, Uses and Nodulation
Publication
 
Author
Allen O.N.; Allen E.K.
Publisher
University of Wisconsin
Year
1981
ISBN
0-333-32221-5
Description
An amazing and comprehensive work, giving a brief guide to the many genera of the family Fabaceae and also the principle uses of the genus.
].

Botanical References


Range

Tropical Africa - Nigeria to Ethiopia and Kenya, south through eastern Africa to Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Madagascar.

Habitat

Rainforest and riverine forest, sometimes also in savannah vegetation close to forest, usually at higher elevations up to 2,500 metres, but sometimes descending to near sea-level[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height25.00 m
Growth RateFast
PollinatorsBees, Insects
Cultivation StatusOrnamental, Wild

Cultivation Details

Mature plants can tolerate some frost[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
Requires some shelter because the trees can be damaged by strong winds[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
Trees are capable of growing rapidly[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
Trees can be coppiced[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
Trees can recover from forest fires[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Edible Uses

The gum from the bark is sometimes used in confectionery[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Medicinal

An infusion of the bark is taken to treat malaria and to hasten parturition[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The pounded bark is used as a snuff to treat headache[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
],
The bark is applied externally as a body wash to treat conditions such as scabies and psoriasis[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

The roots and leaves are purgative. They are used in the treatment of diarrhoea and eye troubles[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The roots are soaked in water for 10 minutes, and the liquid is drunk to relieve the pain caused by sprains[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
]. They are also used in the treatment of sleeping sickness[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The pounded roots are added to a bath to treat skin diseases[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
A decoction of the leaves is used as an antitussive and to treat asthma[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The leaves are applied externally to sores and fractures[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

An extract of the crushed pods is drunk to treat stomach ache[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

A dichloromethane extract of the root bark showed considerable in-vitro antitrypanosomal activity, with an IC50 value of 0.07 μg/ml, which confirms its use as a traditional treatment of sleeping sickness.[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
Root bark extracts also showed in-vitro antimalarial activity against Plasmodium falciparum, although much less than chloroquine used as reference drug[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The presence of triterpenoid saponins, sapogenin lactones and macrocyclic spermine alkaloids (budmunchiamines) has been reported for the stem bark. These last compounds were active against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Agroforestry Uses:

The tree is valued for providing shade for crops such as coffee, tea and vanilla, and is also planted or retained for soil conservation and improvement[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
In an experiment in Ethiopia, the leaves and twigs contained per 100 g dry matter: N 3.8 g, P 0.2 g, K 1.5 g, lignin 26 g, soluble polyphenols 8.5 g; they had a C/N ratio of 12. Mulching a maize crop with the leaves and twigs resulted in a smaller yield increase than green manure of the other species tested, probably due to the low P and K content of the Albizia gummifera green manure[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Other Uses

The leaves are said to quicken the ripening of bananas[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

The heartwood is yellowish brown or reddish brown, often with a golden tinge; it is distinctly demarcated from the 7 - 10cm wide pale yellow or white sapwood. The grain is straight or interlocked, texture medium to coarse. The wood properties are variable and depend on the origin of the wood, that from Madagascar being heaviest and strongest. The wood is moderately light to moderately heavy[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
]. It generally saws and works fairly easily with ordinary hand and machine tools, but sawn and planed surfaces tend to pick up. The use of a filler is necessary to obtain a good finish. The wood holds nails and screws well and does not split easily. The gluing and staining properties are satisfactory, and steam bending properties moderate. Reports on durability of the heartwood are contradictory, but in general it is susceptible to fungal, wood borer and termite attack[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
]. The wood is used for light construction, furniture, cabinet work and various implements. It is also suitable for mine props, light flooring, joinery, interior trim, panelling, framing, toys and novelties, sporting goods, boxes, crates, carvings, peeled and sliced veneer, plywood, hardboard and particle board[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
]. Logs are traditionally used for the construction of canoes[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
]. The wood pulp is suitable for paper production[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].
The wood is sometimes used as firewood and for making charcoal[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
].

Propagation

Seed - when sown fresh and still moist, the seeds do not require pre-treatment and may have a germination rate of up to 80% within 3 - 10 days[
299
Title
Protabase - Plant Resources of Tropical Africa.
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.prota.org
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line database with detailed information on over 3,200 species of useful plants of Africa.
]. Stored seed develops a hard seedcoat and may benefit from scarification before sowing to speed up germination. This can usually be done by pouring a small amount of nearly boiling water on the seeds (being careful not to cook them!) and then soaking them for 12 - 24 hours in warm water. By this time they should have imbibed moisture and swollen - if they have not, then carefully make a nick in the seedcoat (being careful not to damage the embryo) and soak for a further 12 hours before sowing.
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2020-08-11. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Albizia+gummifera>

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