Indigofera rhynchocarpa quadrangularis Berhaut
Indigofera tetragona J.-P.Lebrun & Taton
Indigofera garckeana is a softly-woody shrub growing 100 - 300cm tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine
Tropical Africa - Senegal, Chad, Ethiopia and Eritrea, south through eastern Africa to Zimbabwe
Scattered-trees grassland; deciduous, Brachystegia woodland; wooded savannah or open forest on sand; under slight shade on tamped soil; bushland; at elevations from 550 - 1,950 metres[
Indigoera species generally grow best in a sunny position, preferring a well-drained but moist soil[
]. Many of the species will also succeed in drier conditions and in poor soils.
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.
The crushed leaves are used for cleaning sores on the skin[
The roots are used to ease pain[
]. (quite probably chewing them to relieve toothache[
The plant (part not specified) is used to treat pulmonary troubles[
Seed - it has a hard seedcoat and may benefit from scarification before sowing in order to speed up and improve 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.
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