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Useful Tropical Plants

Detarium senegalense

J.F.Gmel.

Fabaceae


The genus Detarium comprises three very similar species: Detarium microcarpum, Detarium senegalense and Detarium macrocarpum, which grow in different habitats. Detariun macrocarpum is typically found in humid forest, whilst this species is more riparian and also occurs in dry forest, and Detariun microcarpum occurs in dry savannah[
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.
].

+ Synonyms

Detarium heudelotianum Baill.

Common Name: Tallow Tree

Detarium senegalense
Leaf and seedpod
Photograph by: Wilma Dijkstra; African plants - A Photo Guide
© Wilma Dijkstra
Detarium senegalense Detarium senegalense Detarium senegalense Detarium senegalense Detarium senegalense Detarium senegalense Detarium senegalense

General Information

Detarium senegalense is a deciduous tree with a relatively short bole and a large, very leafy crown; it can grow from 15 - 36 metres tall[
328
Title
African Flowering Plants Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.ville-ge.ch/musinfo/bd/cjb/africa/recherche.php
Publisher
Conservatoire et Jardin Botaniques.
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Contains information on over 150,000 plant names (including synonyms) giving a description and habitat, plus a distribution map.
].
The plant is gathered from the wild for food and medicine and the plant is semi-cultivated in Senegal[
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
].

Known Hazards

The fruit is toxic, but a non-toxic form is eaten[
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
].
The toxicity of the fruit is determined by the tree. There are toxic trees and non-toxic trees of the same species. There is currently no way to determine toxicity of a fruit once it is separated from the tree. You can tell that a tree is "bad" because fruit lying on the ground will not be eaten by birds, insects, etc. whereas fruits on the ground under a good tree will be devoured by animals[
972
Title
Personal Communication, Graydon Simkins
Publication
 
Author
 
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
Personal communication.
].

Botanical References


Range

Tropical Africa - Senegal to Sudan.

Habitat

Closed- and fringing forest in the moister savannah regions; open savannah; to elevations of 650 metres alt[
328
Title
African Flowering Plants Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.ville-ge.ch/musinfo/bd/cjb/africa/recherche.php
Publisher
Conservatoire et Jardin Botaniques.
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Contains information on over 150,000 plant names (including synonyms) giving a description and habitat, plus a distribution map.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height25.00 m
Cultivation StatusSemi-cultivated, Wild

Cultivation Details

A species of tropical forest areas where the average annual rainfall is in the range of 1,500 - 1,600mm[
335
Title
Perennial Edible Fruits of the Tropics : an Inventory
Publication
 
Author
Martin, F. W.; Campbell, C. W.; Rubertbe, R. M.
Publisher
U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service
Year
1987
ISBN
 
Description
A booklet giving terse details of almost 300 species of edible fruits, plus regional lists of Botanical and Common names for over 2,500 less well-known edible fruits of the tropics.
].

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[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw or dried[
335
Title
Perennial Edible Fruits of the Tropics : an Inventory
Publication
 
Author
Martin, F. W.; Campbell, C. W.; Rubertbe, R. M.
Publisher
U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service
Year
1987
ISBN
 
Description
A booklet giving terse details of almost 300 species of edible fruits, plus regional lists of Botanical and Common names for over 2,500 less well-known edible fruits of the tropics.
]. Used as a sweetmeat[
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
]. The fruit is toxic but a non-toxic form is eaten[
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
].

A sweet pulp from the fruits is used as a substitute for sugar[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
].

Although no other records for this species has been seen yet, it probably has most, if not all, the same uses as the closely related D. microcarpum[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Medicinal

The fruits, seeds, bark, leaves, and wood are used for medicinal purposes[
317
Title
Mansfeld's Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://mansfeld.ipk-gatersleben.de/pls/htmldb_pgrc/f?p=185:3:4292127278597336
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details of a huge range of useful plants.
].

Although no other records for this species has been seen yet, it probably has most, if not all, the same uses as the closely related D. microcarpum[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Other Uses

The tree produces a fragrant resin[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
].

The grey wood is hard with a fine, regular grain[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
]. It is resistant to insects and works well[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
]. Used for carpentry, joinery etc[
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
].

Although no other records for this species has been seen yet, it probably has most, if not all, the same uses as the closely related D. microcarpum[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Propagation

Seed -

Comments

Graydon Simkins 09th May 2015 12:00
Your information on the toxicity of the detarium senegalense is inaccurate and potentially dangerous. The toxicity of the fruit is determined by the tree. There are toxic trees and non-toxic trees of the same species. There is currently no way to determine toxicity of a fruit once it is separated from the tree. You can tell that a tree is "bad" because fruit lying on the ground will not be eaten by birds, insects, etc. whereas fruits on the ground under a good tree will be devoured by animals.

Source: I spent three years working as a Ag Specialist Peace Corps volunteer in rural Senegal.

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