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Useful Tropical Plants

Grewia villosa

Willd.

Malvaceae

+ Synonyms

Grewia chaunothamnus K.Schum.

Grewia corylifolia A.Rich.

Grewia echinulata Delile

Common Name: Mallow Raisin

Grewia villosa
Flowering stem
Photograph by: David Bygott
Creative Commons 2 Share Adapt
Grewia villosa Grewia villosa Grewia villosa

General Information

Grewia villosa is usually a deciduous, much-branched shrub growing from 1 - 4 metres tall, though it sometimes becomes more tree-like and up to 4.5 metres tall[
308
Title
Flora Zambesiaca
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://apps.kew.org/efloras/fz/intro.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online flora of plants from the Zambezi River basin. It lists a number of the plant uses as well as the habitats and botanical descriptions of the plants.
,
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.
,
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

308
Title
Flora Zambesiaca
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://apps.kew.org/efloras/fz/intro.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online flora of plants from the Zambezi River basin. It lists a number of the plant uses as well as the habitats and botanical descriptions of the plants.

Range

Tropical Africa - drier areas from Mauritania to Egypt and Somalia, south to Namibia, Botswana and S. Africa; through Arabia to India.

Habitat

Acacia-Terminalia-Combretum woodland in rocky, sandy and limestone areas; arid hills; Acacia bush or woodland; mixed Commiphora-Terminalia bushland; sandy to clayey-sandy depressions, often gravelly or on cuirass; scree; elevations to 1,800 metres[
308
Title
Flora Zambesiaca
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://apps.kew.org/efloras/fz/intro.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online flora of plants from the Zambezi River basin. It lists a number of the plant uses as well as the habitats and botanical descriptions of the plants.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitDeciduous Shrub
Height3.00 m
Growth RateSlow
Self-fertileNo
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

A plant of drier areas in the tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 1,200 metres. In Tanzania it grows in areas where the mean annual rainfall is in the range 900 - 1,200mm[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
]. The plant is tolerant of very high temperatures and a mean annual rainfall in the range 200 - 800mm[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
Thrives in black-cotton soil and in sedimentary soils[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
]. Grows wild in stony and rocky, ferruginous soils[
774
Title
Trees and Shrubs of the Sahel. Their Characteristics and Uses.
Publication
 
Author
von Maydell H.
Publisher
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit; Germany
Year
1990
ISBN
3-8236-1198-4
Description
A well-researched book, usually with more than one photograph of each species and good information on the plant and its uses.
]. Succeeds in land subject to seasonal inundation[
774
Title
Trees and Shrubs of the Sahel. Their Characteristics and Uses.
Publication
 
Author
von Maydell H.
Publisher
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit; Germany
Year
1990
ISBN
3-8236-1198-4
Description
A well-researched book, usually with more than one photograph of each species and good information on the plant and its uses.
].
A very slow-growing plant[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].
The flowers are usually dioecious, though they are occasionally bisexual. Therefore, generally, both male and female forms need to be grown if fruit is required[
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.
].

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw[
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.
,
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
]. A sweet-tasting pulp[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
]. Delicious[
287
Title
Flora of Pakistan
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.efloras.org
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
As of 2006, there is not much information on habitats available, but it is being developed and promises to be an excellent resource.
]. It can be eaten fresh or dried for later use[
1731
Title
Phytochemical and Pharmacological Properties of the Genus Grewia; A Review
Publication
Int J Pharm Pharm Sci, Vol 4, Suppl 4, 72-78; 2012
Author
Goyal P.K.
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
0975-1491
Description
 
]. The seeds are usually discarded[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
]. The red-brown fruit is about 10mm in diameter, containing 1 - 2 hard seeds[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
].
In Namibia the fruits yield very little pulp. The brittle fruit shell of dry fruits is discarded and the seeds are pounded before consumption[
775
Title
Gemsbok Bean and Kalahari Truffle
Publication
 
Author
Leffers A.
Publisher
Gamsberg MacMillan; Namibia.
Year
2003
ISBN
99916-0-491-X
Description
Details of the traditional uses of over 200 species of plants in northeastern Namibia. Written for the non-expert, there is usually at least one photograph with each plant entry.
].

Medicinal

Grewia species are valued in many cultures for their medicinal virtues. The main medicinal action appears to come from the mucilage that is found in the leaves, stems and roots, which has been shown to have soothing and healing properties. Taken internally it is often used as a remedy for diarrhoea and dysentery, for example, whilst externally it is applied to wounds, cuts, ulcers, irritations etc. The plant can be taken as a simple infusion or decoction, or it can be applied topically as a poultice of the plant, or the mucilage can be extracted from the plant, if required, by maceration and then decoction.

The roots are emetic. They are used to treat diarrhoea and body pains[
287
Title
Flora of Pakistan
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.efloras.org
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
As of 2006, there is not much information on habitats available, but it is being developed and promises to be an excellent resource.
,
387
Title
Economic Products of India. Volume 1.
Publication
 
Author
Watt. G.
Publisher
Government of India: Calcutta.
Year
1883
ISBN
 
Description
Although over 100 years old, it still contains a wealth of information on useful plants. Many of the botanical names have been changed since then, so you have to check for up to date names. The book can be downloaded from the Internet.
,
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
,
1321
Title
Swaziland's Flora - siSwati Names and Uses
Publication
 
Author
Chris Long
Website
http://www.sntc.org.sz/flora/chrislong.asp
Publisher
 
Year
2005
ISBN
 
Description
A basic, but very long, list of names and uses.
,
1731
Title
Phytochemical and Pharmacological Properties of the Genus Grewia; A Review
Publication
Int J Pharm Pharm Sci, Vol 4, Suppl 4, 72-78; 2012
Author
Goyal P.K.
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
0975-1491
Description
 
].

The juice of the fresh bark is used in the treatment of urinary troubles, irritation in the bladder and gonorrhoea[
287
Title
Flora of Pakistan
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.efloras.org
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
As of 2006, there is not much information on habitats available, but it is being developed and promises to be an excellent resource.
,
1731
Title
Phytochemical and Pharmacological Properties of the Genus Grewia; A Review
Publication
Int J Pharm Pharm Sci, Vol 4, Suppl 4, 72-78; 2012
Author
Goyal P.K.
Publisher
 
Year
2012
ISBN
0975-1491
Description
 
].
The bark is used in the treatment of wounds, syphilis and smallpox[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
,
774
Title
Trees and Shrubs of the Sahel. Their Characteristics and Uses.
Publication
 
Author
von Maydell H.
Publisher
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit; Germany
Year
1990
ISBN
3-8236-1198-4
Description
A well-researched book, usually with more than one photograph of each species and good information on the plant and its uses.
].

Other Uses

A good quality fibre is obtained from the inner bark. Used for making ropes[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
,
774
Title
Trees and Shrubs of the Sahel. Their Characteristics and Uses.
Publication
 
Author
von Maydell H.
Publisher
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit; Germany
Year
1990
ISBN
3-8236-1198-4
Description
A well-researched book, usually with more than one photograph of each species and good information on the plant and its uses.
].

An extract from the bark is used for gluing tobacco leaves[
774
Title
Trees and Shrubs of the Sahel. Their Characteristics and Uses.
Publication
 
Author
von Maydell H.
Publisher
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit; Germany
Year
1990
ISBN
3-8236-1198-4
Description
A well-researched book, usually with more than one photograph of each species and good information on the plant and its uses.
].

The small stems are used for walking sticks, spearshafts, bows and for making granaries[
398
Title
Edible Wild Plants of Tanzania
Publication
 
Author
Ruffo, C.K.: Birnie, A. & Tengnas, B.
Publisher
Regional Land Management Unit; Nairobi.
Year
2002
ISBN
9966-896-60-0
Description
A very well presented, simple guide to growing and utilizing wild food plants in Tanzania, with line drawings of each plant, a description, habitat and range, non-food as well as food uses, plus basic information on growing the plants.
,
484
Title
West African Forests and Forestry
Publication
 
Author
Unwin A.H.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
T. Fisher Unwin Ltd.; London
Year
1920
ISBN
 
Description
Quite extensive information on some of the trees of West Africa. The book can be downloaded from the Internet
,
774
Title
Trees and Shrubs of the Sahel. Their Characteristics and Uses.
Publication
 
Author
von Maydell H.
Publisher
Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit; Germany
Year
1990
ISBN
3-8236-1198-4
Description
A well-researched book, usually with more than one photograph of each species and good information on the plant and its uses.
].

Propagation

Seed - we have no specific information for this species but seed of this genus is generally best sown as soon as it is ripe. Stored seed 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!), allowing the mix to cool somewhat and then leaving it in a warm place to soak for 12 - 24 hours. Sow the seeds in situ or in a nursery seedbed or trays - do not allow the compost to become dry. Germination and early growth are usually quite quick.
Cuttings - best taken with a heel.
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2022-11-27. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Grewia+villosa>

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