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Useful Tropical Plants

Triplochiton scleroxylon

K.Schum.

Malvaceae

+ Synonyms

Samba scleroxylon (K.Schum.) Roberty

Common Name:

Triplochiton scleroxylon
You probably need a second look before you realize it is a picture of a person up a 50 metres tall tree!
Photograph by: Pleauthon Pierre
Creative Commons License
Triplochiton scleroxylon Triplochiton scleroxylon

General Information

Triplochiton scleroxylon is a deciduous tree growing up to 50 metres tall. The bole is straight, often angular and strongly ridged; it can be branchless for up to 30 metres. It is usually up to 150cm in diameter, with exceptional specimens up to 210cm, with buttresses that can be up to 8 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.
].
One of the major timber species of western Africa, it has been heavily exploited from the wild and is now commonly planted as a timber crop within its native range and also sometimes outside its range[
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 also utilized locally for food and medicines.
As a widely distributed pioneer species Triplochiton scleroxylon is not easily liable to genetic erosion, but in many regions within its distribution area it is under profound pressure because of excessive exploitation[
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.
]. In some areas the range of the plant is extending because of its successful colonisation of logged and abandoned farm land. It is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2011)[
338
Title
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.iucnredlist.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A list of plants under threat and facing possible extinction, usually with brief details of the threats and information on habitat.
].

Known Hazards

The sawdust has been known to cause occupational allergic contact dermatitis, allergic rhinitis and asthma in workers in sawmills[
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


Range

West tropical Africa - Sierra Leone to Gabon, Central African Republic and DR Congo.

Habitat

Lowland half-deciduous forest; abandoned cultivated ground in transition zone between rain- and half-deciduous forest; old secondary forests[
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

Conservation StatusLeast Concern
Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *  *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height40.00 m
Growth RateFast
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Wild

Cultivation Details

A plant of the moist, lowland tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 900 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 24 - 30°c, but can tolerate 18 - 36°c[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 1,600 - 2,400mm, but tolerates 1,000 - 4,000mm[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
Requires a sunny position[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. Succeeds in most well-drained, fertile soils[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. Prefers a pH in the range 5.5 - 6.5, tolerating 4.5 - 7.5[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
A very fast-growing tree. Under natural conditions seedlings may reach 15 metres tall and 15cm in stem diameter after 4 years. Mean annual diameter increment in the forest averages 1cm, but in Nigeria mean annual diameter increments of up to 2.5cm have been recorded and in the Central African Republic as low as 0.3cm. In a 19-year-old plantation in Ghana with 600 stems/ha, the trees were on average 21.8 metres tall with a bole diameter of 27cm[
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

Leaves - cooked[
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.
]. They are used as a cooked vegetable or sauce in traditional cuisine in west Africa[
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.
,
617
Title
Traditional Vegetables in Benin
Publication
 
Author
Achigan-Dako E. Et al
Publisher
Darwin Initiative; International Foundation for Science
Year
2009
ISBN
 
Description
Issued as a PDF on the Internet, it contains basic information on over 250 species of plants used for food in Benin.
].

Medicinal

The plant is used in traditional medicine to treat oedemas and as an anodyne[
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.
].

Agroforestry Uses:

The trees are often preserved in cocoa plantations to serve as shade trees[
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.
]. In Nigeria Triplochiton scleroxylon is planted in agroforestry systems with cocoa[
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 is a natural pioneer species, rapidly invading open land in situations such as abandoned farm land. It could be used to help re-establish native forest or as a nurse tree in establishing a woodland garden[
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.
,
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Other Uses

The bark is used to cover the roof and walls of huts[
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 whitish to pale yellow; it is indistinctly demarcated from the up to 15cm wide band of somewhat lighter sapwood. The grain is usually interlocked, sometimes straight; texture is moderately coarse. The wood has a ribbon-like aspect on quarter-sawn faces, and is lustrous. Fresh wood has an unpleasant smell, which disappears upon drying. The wood is very light in weight; very soft; not durable, being liable to fungal attack (e.g. blue stain), and susceptible to termites, powder-post beetles and dry-wood borers - it should not be used in contact with the ground or exposed to the weather. It seasons rapidly with little risk of checking or distortion; once dry it is moderately stable to stable in service. It works easily with hand and machine tools; ordinary saw teeth and cutting tools can be used; sharp edges are needed for a smooth finish, and the wood tends to tear in mortising - a cutting angle of 15° is recommended when planing to prevent tearing; peeling and slicing properties are good; the wood stains and polishes well; filling is recommended to obtain a good finish; nailing and screwing properties are rather poor; splitting may occur; gluing does not cause problems, although it must be done carefully as the wood is absorbent. The carving characteristics are good. The wood is widely used for interior joinery, panelling, moulding, furniture, boxes and crates, sculptures, matches, pencils, peeled and sliced veneer for interior and exterior parts of plywood, fibre and particle boards, and block board. It is of great importance for house building, for beams, posts and planks, and is also used for roof shingles. The wood from the buttresses is used to make doors, platters, bowls and sandals, and the bole is used for dugout canoes. The wood pulp can be used to produce paper of moderate quality[
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.
].

Propagation

Seed - it starts to germinate 1 - 2 weeks after sowing, but the germination rate is often low. Germination rate and speed increase when the seeds are pre-treated by moistening between layers of damp cotton wool[
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.
]. Fruits with wings removed are shallowly buried in pots, which are placed under shade. The seedlings are pricked out when first leaves appear. They are fragile and sensitive to damping off[
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.
]. They develop a taproot, which is often forked, with few lateral roots in the upper 15cm of the soil. The taproot of a 2 metre tall sapling may be 1 metre long[
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.
]. Seedlings of 1 - 3 years old with their tops intact but the root system severely cut back to permit planting in 40 cm × 40 cm × 40 cm holes were successful[
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.
]. However, it has also been observed that cutting the primary root for planting causes serious drawbacks; new roots form slowly, which makes the plant liable to parasitic attacks[
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 can be collected from the trees when still green just before maturation. Fruits stored at 18°c fully retained their viability for 18 months. However, at 25°c viability drops from about 80% to 15% after 6 months[
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.
]. More than 50% of the seeds may still germinate after being stored for 7.5 years in sealed containers at 4°c[
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.
].
Single-node cuttings with one leaf were rooted successfully under mist; rooting was improved by a hormone dip and a high temperature in the bed (30°c)[
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.
].
Cuttings 10cm long with 2 - 4 leaves taken from 2 month-old branches can be used. These are placed in a nursery under 40 - 60% shade under mist. It takes about 12 weeks to obtain a rooted and hardened plantlet[
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.
].
Marcotting is possible by ringing a branch at an internode; results are optimal when the foliage is at maximum density, between August and October, with up to 50% success in 12-year-old trees[
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.
].
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2020-07-06. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Triplochiton+scleroxylon>

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