Acacia flexicaulis Benth.
Chloroleucon ebano (Berland.) L.Rico
Ebenopsis caesalpinioides (Standl.) Britton & Rose
Ebenopsis confinis (Standl.) Britton & Rose
Ebenopsis flexicaulis (Benth.) Britton & Rose
Mimosa ebano Berland.
Pithecellobium ebano (Berland.) C.H.Müll.
Pithecellobium flexicaule (Benth.) J.M.Coult.
Zygia flexicaulis (Benth.) Sudw.
Photograph by: PINKÉ
Ebenopsis ebano is a slow-growing, spiny, evergreen tree with a dense, spreading crown, though it is semi deciduous in the coldest part of its range[
]. It grows very slowly, usually up to a height of about 6 metres, though occasional specimens, especially in the south of its range, have reached 15 metres with a bole 1.2 metres in diameter[
The edible seed is harvested from the wild for local use, whilst the wood also has local uses.
Central America - Mexico to southern N. America - Texas.
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A tree of warm temperate to tropical dry areas, able to withstand temperatures down to about -12°c[
Grows best in a sunny position, succeeding in most well-drained soils including acid conditions, but prefers an alkaline soil[
]. Tolerates compacted soils and windy sites[
]. Established plants are very drought tolerant[
Seed - roasted[
]. The green seeds are cooked and eaten[
]. The fully ripe seeds are roasted and eaten[
]. When eaten in large quantities by people who are not accustomed to them, they can produce a mild discharge of the urethra similar in all respects to a blennorrhoea that does not damage and that has no consequence at all[
Green seed pods - cooked[
The thick seedcoat is used as a substitute for coffee[
The roasted seeds are used as a substitute for coffee[
The black woody shells (seedpods?[
]) can be roasted and used as a coffee substitute[
The seed pods are brown and woody, 8 - 15cm long and 2.5 - 4cm wide[
The toasted seeds are purgative[
The tree has been used in reclamation projects[
The heartwood is dark red to purplish brown, the sapwood is yellowish[
]. The wood is hard, close-grained, very durable, but brittle[
]. It is used for cabinet work, fence posts, wagons etc[
Seed - requires pre-treatment by first of all scarifying the seedcoat and then soaking the seed for 12 - 24 hours in warm water[
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