Machaerium ciliatum Benth.
Machaerium densicomum Mart. ex Benth.
Machaerium erianthum Benth.
Machaerium luschnathianum C.Presl
Machaerium brasiliense is usually a semideciduous tree with an open, more or less globose crown; it can grow 8 - 14 metres tall, sometimes reaching 23 metres. The straight bole can be 40 - 70cm in diameter[
]. At times the plant can become more shrub-like with branches that can scramble into the surrounding vegetation.
The tree is sometimes harvested from the wild for local use of its wood. It can be used as a pioneer when restoring native woodland.
Whilst this species is not regarded as being specifically threatened or in decline at present, habitat loss and degradation through human activity is becoming an increasing problem throughout its range. The plant is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2011)[
S. America - central. Eastern and northern Brazil.
Atlantic rainforest and broadleaved semideciduous forest, found mainly in the more open, secondary formations, favouring slopes and well-drained land[
|Conservation Status||Least Concern
|Other Uses Rating||
Grows best in a sunny position[
]. Prefers a well-drained soil[
]. Established plants are drought tolerant[
Young plants have a moderate rate of growth[
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[
A natural pioneer species that fixes atmospheric nitrogen, it can be used in planting schemes for restoring native woodland[
The wood is medium-textured, moderately heavy, soft, with moderate mechanical properties and not very durable. It is only used locally, fir purposes such as general construction, internal work, carpentry, boxes and making tool handles[
The wood is used for fuel and to make charcoal[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a sunny position in a nursery seedbed. A high germination rate can usually be expected, with the seed sprouting within 14 - 28 days[
]. When the seedlings are 5 - 6cm tall, pot them up into individual containers and they should be ready to plant out 5 - 6 months later[
Like many species within the family Fabaceae, once they have been dried for storage the seeds of this species 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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