Cassia annunciata E.H.L.Krause
Cassia dumetorum DC.
Cassia reticulata Willd.
Cassia strobilacea Kunth
Cassia tarantan Kunth
Chamaesenna reticulata (Willd.) Pittier
Senna reticulata is a large shrub or sometimes a tree with a rounded crown; it can grow from 2 - 15 metres tall[
]. The bole is usually short, 3 - 10cm in diameter, and is often supported by short prop roots[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local medicinal use. It has potential for use as a pioneer species for restoring native woodland. A very showy plant, noteworthy for the contrast in colour of the bright yellow petals and the orange sepals and bracts, it is sometimes planted around dwellings[
The branches and inflorescence are nearly always infested by small ants that can bite severely[
S. America - Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, the Guyanas; C. America - Panama to Mexico; Caribbean - Trinidad.
A plant of low elevations, in dry, wet or very damp climates. Common on the banks of rivers and streams, also in open and marshy areas[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Pollinators||Bees, Butterflies, Insects
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
The plant sometimes forms dense thickets along stream beds or about the margins of lakes, growing at times in shallow water[
Although many species within the family Fabaceae have a symbiotic relationship with soil bacteria, this species is said to be devoid of such a relationship and therefore does not fix atmospheric nitrogen[
The leaves and flowers are crushed in water and used as a wash for treating eczema and other skin eruptions - the crushed leaves being used as a sponge[
The leaves are febrifuge, laxative. They are used in the treatment of ringworm, fevers and pneumonia[
The flowers are emetic and laxative[
The seedpods are purgative[
The boiled root is used as a remedy for fevers[
The plant often springs up abundantly on cleared land, forming dense stands of great extent[
]. This makes the plant an ideal candidate as a pioneer species for restoring native woodland[
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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