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Useful Tropical Plants

Celtis gomphophylla

Baker

Cannabaceae

+ Synonyms

Celtis dioica S.Moore

Celtis durandii Engl.

Celtis ugandensis Rendle

Trema integrifolia Baill.

Common Name:

Celtis gomphophylla
Leaves
Photograph by: TanzaniaPlantCollaboration
Creative Commons License
Celtis gomphophylla Celtis gomphophylla Celtis gomphophylla Celtis gomphophylla

General Information

Celtis gomphophylla varies considerably in habit, from a shrub to a tree with a spreading crown; it can be from 3 - 30 metres tall, or even up to 60 metres according to some reports. The tree can be evergreen or deciduous according to the climate in which it is growing. The bole is often irregular or gnarled, it can be unbranched for up to 13 metres and is usually up to 40cm in diameter, but can be up to 120cm. It is often fluted, sometimes with low but spreading buttresses[
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 tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine, snake repellant and source of wood. The wood is also harvested commercially for export. The tree is grown to provide shade for crops and can also be used as a pioneer plant in reforestation projects.

Known Hazards

Wood dust may cause irritation to nose and throat[
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.
].

Botanical References

308
Title
Flora Zambesiaca
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://apps.kew.org/efloras/fz/intro.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online flora of plants from the Zambezi River basin. It lists a number of the plant uses as well as the habitats and botanical descriptions of the plants.

Range

Africa - Cote D'Ivoire to Ethiopia, south to Angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe, northeastern S. Africa and Madagascar.

Habitat

Understorey of moist evergreen, semi-deciduous and riverine forest, often in secondary formations in C. Africa; restricted to upland forest in W. Africa; forest edges, thickets, woodland and wooded grassland in E. Africa, coastal forest in S. Africa[
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

Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *  *
HabitSemi-deciduous Tree
Height25.00 m
PollinatorsBees
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

A plant of the tropics and subtropics, where it can be found at elevations up to 1,750 metres. In western Kenya it is locally dominant in rainforest in areas with a mean annual rainfall of 1,400 - 1,900mm[
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 tree grows rapidly in full sunlight, but growth is poor or stops completely under shaded conditions.

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

A leaf decoction is used for the treatment of cardiovascular disorders[
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 root decoction is used to treat fever and menstrual pains[
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 trials, leaf extracts have shown a vaso-relaxant effect[
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:

Planted as a shade tree for crops and to improve soil conditions[
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 tree seems to be useful for forest restoration and possibly also for planting in agroforestry systems[
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 wood and bark have a bad smell and are used as insect and snake repellents in houses[
364
Title
Field Guide to the Moist Forest Trees of Tanzania.
Publication
 
Author
Lovett J.C.; Ruffo C.K.; Gereau R.E.; Taplin J.R.D
Website
http://www.york.ac.uk/res/celp/webpages/projects/ecology/tree%20guide/introduction.htm
Publisher
Frontier
Year
0
ISBN
1-873070-33-0
Description
A lovely little book giving a basic identification guide to more than 650 species of trees growing in Tanzania. It is also available to view on the internet.
].

The heartwood is whitish, turning slightly darker upon exposure; it is not distinctly demarcated from the sapwood. The grain is usually interlocked; texture moderately fine; the wood has a persistent unpleasant smell when green or when rewetted. The wood is medium-weight; softer and less strong than that of the other Celtis spp; generally of low durability, being susceptible to attack by fungi and Lyctus, but reported to be moderately durable in DR Congo and southern Africa. It seasons slowly, with a high risk of checking and distortion; once dry it is moderately stable in service. It saws and works well with both machine and hand tools, but cutting edges should be kept sharp. A reduced cutting angle of 15° is recommended when machining quarter-sawn stock to prevent tearing along the grain. The wood holds nails and screws moderately well, but has a tendency to split; pre-boring is therefore advised; boring and mortising should be done with strong support; gluing properties are good; steam bending properties moderate; it does not turn well. The wood is commonly used for light construction, light flooring, joinery, furniture, cabinet work, canoes, ladders, sporting goods, agricultural implements, tool handles and matches. It is suitable for ship building, vehicle bodies, 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.
,
848
Title
Tropix 7
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://tropix.cirad.fr/en
Publisher
CIRAD
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line guide to the timbers of 245 species of trees.
].
The wood is also used as firewood and for charcoal 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.
].

Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe, it germinates readily without pre-treatment[
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.
].
After cleaning and drying the seed can be stored for up to 2 months in sealed containers[
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.
].
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2021-03-01. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Celtis+gomphophylla>

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