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Useful Tropical Plants

Sacoglottis gabonensis

(Baill.) Urb.

Humiriaceae

+ Synonyms

Aubrya gabonensis Baill.

Houmiri gabonensis (Baill.) Baill.

Common Name:

Sacoglottis gabonensis
Base of the trunk
Photograph by: Tariq Stévart
Creative Commons License
Sacoglottis gabonensis Sacoglottis gabonensis Sacoglottis gabonensis Sacoglottis gabonensis

General Information

Sacoglottis gabonensis is a large evergreen tree with an immense, heavy-branched crown that can grow 40 metres or more tall. The bole can be free of branches for up to 20 metres, but more often branches from low down. It is often crooked, knotty and deeply fluted; up to 180cm in diameter with buttresses up to 2.5 metres high[
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.
].
The tree is exploited from the wild for its timber, which is used locally and also exported[
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.
]. The bark is a popular medicine and is sold in local markets[
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.
]. The tree also provides food for local use. The bark, when slashed, exudes a sticky brownish sap with sickly sweet scent[
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.
].

Known Hazards

The bark is used as a fish poison[
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.
].

Botanical References

636
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
A treatment of the genus Theobroma and a monograph of the Humiriaceae are two of the various articles contained in this issue. It can be downloaded from the Internet.

Range

Western tropical Africa - Sierra Leone to the Congo.

Habitat

Usually found near the coast in rain-forest, fresh-water swamp forest; riversides and edges of lagoons at elevations up to 600 metres[
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 *  *  *
HabitEvergreen Tree
Height40.00 m
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details



The tree can be coppiced[
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.
].
The plant may have evolved from seeds, which arrived on the West African coast from South America, being one of the most illustrative cases of dispersal by water from South America to Africa. The resin-filled chambers of the stone make it float in water and seeds remain viable for up to 4 years[
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.
].

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw[
636
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
A treatment of the genus Theobroma and a monograph of the Humiriaceae are two of the various articles contained in this issue. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
]. A sweet flavour, it tastes like banana bread[
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.
]. It is mainly eaten by children[
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.
]. The fruits are the source of a fermented drink called 'stouton'[
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 fruit is a green to yellow, ellipsoid to globose drupe 30 - 40mm long and 25 - 35mm wide[
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.
].

Seed[
636
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
A treatment of the genus Theobroma and a monograph of the Humiriaceae are two of the various articles contained in this issue. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
]. Grilled[
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.
].

The seeds contain 54% of a fatty oil[
636
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
A treatment of the genus Theobroma and a monograph of the Humiriaceae are two of the various articles contained in this issue. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

A bark decoction is used as a spice in food to induce heat in nursing and pregnant mothers[
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.
].
The peeled bark is added to palm wine[
636
Title
Contributions from the United States National Herbarium Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution Press; Washington.
Year
1968
ISBN
 
Description
A treatment of the genus Theobroma and a monograph of the Humiriaceae are two of the various articles contained in this issue. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
]. It is claimed to prolong the shelf life of the wine, add potency, reduce foaming and impart a bitter taste[
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.
]. It is also reported to have aphrodisiac properties[
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.
]. The alcohol content of palm wine from Raphia hookeri, when the stem bark was added, became almost twice as high as that of untreated palm wine. It was found that the ethanol tolerance and osmo-tolerance of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae were enhanced by the bark extract, whereas flocculation and invertase activity were reduced[
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.
].

Medicinal

The stembark is a popular and much used medicine in west Africa, An infusion is used as an emetic and in the treatment of fevers, diarrhoea, gonorrhoea and abdominal pain - it is also sometimes used to treat hypertension and diabetes[
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.
]. A bark decoction is used to treat stomach-ache[
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.
]. It is used as a spice in food to induce heat in nursing and pregnant mothers[
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.
].
A decoction of the crushed bark, combined with the leaves of Dioscorea minutiflora, are used as a rectal enema to treat acute abdominal pain[
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.
].
Applied externally, a decoction of the stem bark is used to cure difficult cases of dermatitis[
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.
]. A stem bark decoction, combined with other plants, is added to bath water to treat ovarian troubles, vaginal infections and children with fevers[
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.
].

The diluted stem sap is used in hipbaths to promote muscle tone in women after childbirth[
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.
].

Bergenin, an isocoumarin, has been identified as the main active compound of the stem bark[
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.
]. The bark also contains appreciable amounts of tannins, with a trace of saponins. They have also revealed the presence of 2 cis/trans isomers of lignans (calopiptine and galgravine) which may play a role in cancer prevention[
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.
].
The stem bark extract is reported to have hepatoprotective properties[
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.
].
A stem bark extract added to drinking water of rats increased prothrombin and thrombin levels of blood plasma[
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.
].

Other Uses

Bergenin, a compound found in the bark, protects stored vegetable oils against peroxidative deterioration over a period of time[
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.
].

The heartwood is reddish brown to purplish red; it is rather indistinctly demarcated from the narrow band of yellowish sapwood. The grain is straight to wavy; texture fine and even. The wood is heavy; hard; elastic; and durable, being resistant to termites, fungal and insect attacks. It seasons slowly, with a high risk of checking and distortion; once dry it is moderately stable in service. Considering its high density and hardness, the wood is not difficult to saw and work, but it has a severe blunting effect on saw teeth and cutting edges; stellite-tipped saw teeth and tungsten-carbide cutting edges are needed; it is difficult to nail and screw without pre-boring, but the holding power is good; gluing can be difficult because of the density of the wood; finishing is satisfactory, but the wood is not suited for veneer and plywood production. The wood is widely, though mainly locally, used for hydraulic works, house and bridge construction, carpentry, heavy flooring, poles, ship building, vehicle bodies, railway sleepers and mine props. It is suitable for interior trim, furniture, cabinet work, toys, novelties, turnery and pattern making[
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.
,
848
Title
Tropix 7
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://tropix.cirad.fr/en
Publisher
CIRAD
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line guide to the timbers of 245 species of trees.
].
The wood is a good fuel and produces a valuable charcoal[
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.
].

Propagation

Seeds take 2 - 4 months to germinate. The germination rate is quite low[
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.
].

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