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COMBRETACEAE

Field Guide to the Moist Forest Trees of Tanzania

Jon C. Lovett, Chris K. Ruffo, Roy E. Gereau & James R.D. Taplin
Illustrations by Line Sørensen & Jilly Lovett

COMBRETACEAE

Combretum schumannii Engl.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: C. macrostigmateum Engl. & Diels
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mgurure, Mkongolo (S), Mlama (L), Mpera-mwitu (Sw), Muamamjewa (P).
Bole: Crooked. Small/medium. To 18 m.
Bark: Buff-Brown. Spongy. Scaling in flakes/smooth.
Slash: Pink with paler vertical streaks. Exuding a thick sap.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 0.8 cm.
Lamina: Medium. 6 – 12 × 2 – 5 cm. Elliptic/oblong. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire. Glabrous and shiny.
Domatia: Present.
Glands: NR.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Yellow, scented. Round axillary spikes.
Fruit: Yellow/green. 4 wings. 3.5 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Riverine, lowland forest. Woodland.
Distr: C, EA (Ul foothills). Eastern and Southeastern Tropical Africa.
Notes: The local name Mpera-mwitu means wild guava tree (though guava is in the Myrtaceae).
Uses: The wood is hard and blackish. It is used for timber, carvings, firewood, charcoal, building poles, pestles, combs, musical instruments and flooring strips. Leaves are used as medicine for headache, epilepsy and pneumonia. Root bark is pounded and rubbed on swollen legs to reduce oedema.
Pteleopsis apetala Vollesen
Syn. FTEA: NR.
Syn. TTCL: NR.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mnepa wa msitu (Ng).
Bole: Medium. To 25 m.
Bark: Grey. Smooth/longitudinally fissured.
Slash: NR.
Leaf: Entire. Alternate/subopposite.
Petiole: NR.
Lamina: Small. 4 – 8 × 2 – 3 cm. Elliptic/obovate. Cuneate/rounded. Acuminate/acute. Entire. Glabrous/hairy on midrib.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: NR.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Axillary subcapitate corymbose racemes. Opening before leaves.
Fruit: Yellow. 2 wings.
Ecology: Dry lowland forest. Thicket.
Distr: C only.
Notes: NR. Uses: NR.
Pteleopsis myrtifolia (M. A. Lawson) Engl. & Diels
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NC.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mgoji, Mlakwenzi (Sw).
Bole: Branched/straight. Medium/large. To 20 m.
Bark: Grey/yellow-grey. Young branchlets reddish-brown.
Slash: Wood red, hard.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite to subopposite/alternate.
Petiole: Up to 1 cm long.
Lamina: Small. 9.5 × 3 cm. Elliptic/oblong-lanceolate. Cuneate. Acute/acuminate. Entire. Glabrous/hairy on midrib.
Domatia: Present.
Glands: NR.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White/yellow, fragrant. Axillary subcapitate racemes.
Fruit: Yellow/green. 2 – 3 wings. 1 – 3 × 0.5 – 1.8 cm.
Ecology: Riverine, dry lowland forest. Woodland. Thicket.
Distr: C, EA. Eastern and Southern Africa.
Notes: NR.
Uses: The wood is used for building poles, firewood, charcoal, tool handles and wooden spoons. The roots are boiled in water and the liquid is drunk to cure venereal diseases.
Pteleopsis tetraptera Wickens
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NR.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mgoji, Mlakwenzi (Sw).
Bole: Small. To 15 m.
Bark: Branchlets greyish-white.
Slash: NR.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite to subopposite/alternate.
Petiole: 0.3 cm, pubescent.
Lamina: Small. 7 × 4 cm. Elliptic. Rounded. Obtuse/acuminate. Entire. Glabrous/hairy on midrib.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: NR.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White/cream. Axillary racemes.
Fruit: 4-winged. Subcircular. 1.2 cm long and wide in outline. 1.2 × 1.2 cm.
Ecology: Dry lowland forest. Woodland. Thicket.
Distr: C. Southeast Kenya.
Notes: NR.
Uses: The wood is used for building poles, firewood, charcoal, spoons and tool handles. Roots are used as medicine for snake bites and venereal diseases.
Terminalia sambesiaca Engl. & Diels
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: T. aemula Diels, T. riparia Engl. & Diels, T. foetens Gilg, miss-id by Griffiths as T. kilimandscharica Engl.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mkulungo, Mpululu (S).
Bole: Straight. Slightly buttressed. Large. To 40 m.
Bark: Grey/dark brown. Smooth/fissured.
Slash: Variable. Dirty yellow with brown streaks, bright yellow toward the wood. Smells sweet.
Leaf: Simple. Whorled. At ends of branches.
Petiole: 4 cm tomentose.
Lamina: Medium. 18 × 13 cm. Elliptic. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire. Hairy/glabrous.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Absent.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White. Axillary/terminal spikes.
Fruit: Red/brown. 2 wings, velvety.
Ecology: Dry lowland and lowland forest.
Distr: C, EA, LN. Eastern and Southern Tropical Africa.
Notes: NR.
Uses: The wood is used for timber, firewood, charcoal, mortars, stools, beehives, tool handles and building poles. The leaves are used as medicine for stomach-ache and infertility in women. The bark is boiled and drunk or used as a hot bath for fever and colds.
Last Updated: 16 June 2017