Machaerium muticum Benth.
Common Name: Jacaranda do Campo
Drawing of the leaves, flowers, seedpods and seed
Photograph by: Martius, C., Eichler, A.G., Urban, I., Flora Brasiliensis, vol. 15(1): fasicle 29, t. 72 (1862)
Machaerium acutifolium is a slow-growing, semi-deciduous shrub or a tree with a fairly open and irregular crown; it can grow from 2.5 - 18 metres tall. The cylindrical bole is 40 - 60cm in diameter[
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of wood - it is sometimes cultivated as a medicinal plant by the native people of northern Brazil[
]. An ornamental tree, it can be used in landscaping, being especially useful for narrow streets[
S. America - Argentina, Paraguay, central, eastern and northern Brazil, Bolivia, Venezuela.
Sandy savannah and wooded savannah, usually in well-drained soils[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Grows best in a sunny position[
]. Requires a well-drained soil[
]. Established plants are drought tolerant[
The plant can flower and produce fruit all year round[
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 plant is used medicinally[
]. No further details are given.
Although slow-growing, it is a pioneer species suitable for planting in degraded soils, where its ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen helps to restore soil fertility[
]. The plant is sometimes regarded as a weed in newly established pastures where it can regrow vigorously[
The wood is heavy, hard, very resistant, long lasting when protected from the elements[
]. It is used in house construction, fine cabinet making, and the manufacture of lathe work that requires strength[
Seed - best sown as soon as ripe in individual pots in a semi-shaded position. Germination rate is usually low, taking place in 5 - 25 days[
]. Seedlings grow away slowly, taking 7 - 8 months before they are ready to plant out. They resent root disturbance, so care must be taken when planting them out[
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