Celtis dioica S.Moore
Celtis durandii Engl.
Celtis ugandensis Rendle
Trema integrifolia Baill.
Celtis gomphophylla varies considerably in habit, from a shrub to a tree with a spreading crown; it can be from 3 - 30 metres tall, or even up to 60 metres according to some reports. The tree can be evergreen or deciduous according to the climate in which it is growing. The bole is often irregular or gnarled, it can be unbranched for up to 13 metres and is usually up to 40cm in diameter, but can be up to 120cm. It is often fluted, sometimes with low but spreading buttresses[
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine, snake repellant and source of wood. The wood is also harvested commercially for export. The tree is grown to provide shade for crops and can also be used as a pioneer plant in reforestation projects.
Wood dust may cause irritation to nose and throat[
Africa - Cote D'Ivoire to Ethiopia, south to Angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe, northeastern S. Africa and Madagascar.
Understorey of moist evergreen, semi-deciduous and riverine forest, often in secondary formations in C. Africa; restricted to upland forest in W. Africa; forest edges, thickets, woodland and wooded grassland in E. Africa, coastal forest in S. Africa[
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A plant of the tropics and subtropics, where it can be found at elevations up to 1,750 metres. In western Kenya it is locally dominant in rainforest in areas with a mean annual rainfall of 1,400 - 1,900mm[
The tree grows rapidly in full sunlight, but growth is poor or stops completely under shaded conditions.
A leaf decoction is used for the treatment of cardiovascular disorders[
A root decoction is used to treat fever and menstrual pains[
In trials, leaf extracts have shown a vaso-relaxant effect[
Planted as a shade tree for crops and to improve soil conditions[
The tree seems to be useful for forest restoration and possibly also for planting in agroforestry systems[
The wood and bark have a bad smell and are used as insect and snake repellents in houses[
The heartwood is whitish, turning slightly darker upon exposure; it is not distinctly demarcated from the sapwood. The grain is usually interlocked; texture moderately fine; the wood has a persistent unpleasant smell when green or when rewetted. The wood is medium-weight; softer and less strong than that of the other Celtis spp; generally of low durability, being susceptible to attack by fungi and Lyctus, but reported to be moderately durable in DR Congo and southern Africa. It seasons slowly, with a high risk of checking and distortion; once dry it is moderately stable in service. It saws and works well with both machine and hand tools, but cutting edges should be kept sharp. A reduced cutting angle of 15° is recommended when machining quarter-sawn stock to prevent tearing along the grain. The wood holds nails and screws moderately well, but has a tendency to split; pre-boring is therefore advised; boring and mortising should be done with strong support; gluing properties are good; steam bending properties moderate; it does not turn well. The wood is commonly used for light construction, light flooring, joinery, furniture, cabinet work, canoes, ladders, sporting goods, agricultural implements, tool handles and matches. It is suitable for ship building, vehicle bodies, hardboard and particle board[
The wood is also used as firewood and for charcoal production[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe, it germinates readily without pre-treatment[
After cleaning and drying the seed can be stored for up to 2 months in sealed containers[
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