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GUTTIFERAE (CLUSIACEAE)

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

GUTTIFERAE (CLUSIACEAE)

Allanblackia stuhlmannii (Engl.) Engl.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: A. sacleuxii Hua
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mkange, Mshambo, Mwaka (Sw), Msambu(S).
Bole: Straight. Large. To 40 m.
Bark: Dark grey/black. Rough. Scaling in squares.
Slash: Red with white stripes. Fibrous/granular. Slight clear exudate.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 1 – 1.8 cm long.
Lamina: Medium. 5 – 19.5 × 1.2 – 7 cm. Oblong/elliptic. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Absent.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Large, waxy, pink. Solitary in axils. Dioecious.
Fruit: Brown/red-brown. Oblong/subglobose. Large. 16 – 34 cm long, 15 – 17 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Submontane and montane forest.
Distr: EA (EUs, Ul, Udz) only.
Notes: Yellow latex in fruit. Anthers on both faces of stamen bundles.
Uses: The wood has timber value and is used for furniture, boxes, crates, beehives and water containers. Seeds are pounded and cooked to extract an edible fat. Fresh leaves are chewed to cure coughs. The oil from seeds is drunk in small quantities twice a day for rheumatism. The bark produces yellow dye. Leaves and roots are used as medicine for impotence. The tree is used for shade and amenity.
Allanblackia ulugurensis Engl.
Syn. FTEA: NC
Syn. TTCL: NC.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mkange, Mshambo, Mwaka (Sw).
Bole: Medium/large. To 30 m.
Bark: Red-brown/brown-grey.
Slash: Pink with yellow latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 0.7 – 1.4 cm.
Lamina: Medium. 7.5 – 19.5 × 4 – 11 cm. Oblong/elliptic. Cuneate. Obtuse/emarginate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Absent.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Pink. Large, waxy. Axillary. At ends of branches.
Fruit: Brown/pink. Conical-oblong. 10 – 13.5 cm long, 6.5 – 8 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Montane and upper montane forest.
Distr: EA (Ng, Udz, Ul) only.
Notes: Anthers on inside face of stamen bundles only.
Uses: The wood is used for timber which is suitable for furniture, crates, boxes and beehives. Seeds produce edible fat. The sap produced from the tree yields yellow dye. The tree is used for shade and is suitable for amenity.
Garcinia buchananii Baker
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NC.
Syn. other: Some authors include G. buchananii in G. huillensis Oliv.
Local names: Unsongwa (Ny).
Bole: Straight. Small/medium. To 25 m.
Bark: Brown/pale grey/black. Smooth/scaling off in small patches to reveal pale areas. Young branchlets red.
Slash: Yellow/white. Thin. Wood white. Usually yellow latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 0.5 – 1.5cm.
Lamina: Medium/small. 5 – 11 × 3 – 5 cm. Elliptic/ovate. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Translucent glandular canals in leaves.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Orange/green-yellow. Solitary or fasicles in axils.
Fruit: Yellow/orange/red. Subglobose, smooth, glabrous. 2 – 2.5 cm in diameter. Edible.
Ecology: Riverine, dry lowland and lowland forest.
Distr: C, EA, LN, LT, LV. Eastern and Central Tropical Africa.
Notes: Resin canals in leaves. Differs from the woodland species G. huillensis in the acuminate leaves, longer petiole and smooth/scaling bark.
Uses: The wood is used for firewood, charcoal, tool handles, spoons, milk pots and stools. The sap yields a yellow dye. Fruits are edible and contain vitamin C. The tree is used for shade and for amenity. An infusion from roots is used as aphrodisiac and as a lotion for venereal sores.
Garcinia kingaensis Engl.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: G. polyantha Oliv. in part.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mfilafila, Msilasila (H).
Bole: Small/medium. To 15 m.
Bark: Grey/brown. Rough/smooth.
Slash: Red. Fine drops of yellow latex.
Leaf: Simple. Alternate.
Petiole: 0.6 – 1.6 cm. Channelled.
Lamina: Medium. 6 – 16 × 3 – 6 cm. Elliptic. Cuneate. Acute/obtuse/acuminate/apiculate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Resin canals visible beneath.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Green/white/yellow. Axillary. Solitary/fascicles. Dioecious.
Fruit: NR.
Ecology: Upper montane and dry montane forest.
Distr: EA, LN, LT. South-eastern Tropical Africa.
Notes: NR.
Uses: The wood is hard and used for firewood, poles, tool handles, spoons, stools and milk pots. The sap gives yellow dye. Fruits are edible. The tree is used for shade and amenity.
Garcinia livingstonei T. Anderson
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: G. pendula Engl., G. pallidinervia (Engl.) Engl.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mpekecho, Mutumbi (Sw).
Bole: Crooked. Small/medium. To 18m.
Bark: Rough/smooth. Slightly fissured.
Slash: Yellow/red latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite/whorled.
Petiole: 0.4 – 0.8 cm. Channelled.
Lamina: Medium. 4 – 14 × 1.5 – 11.5 cm. Lanceolate/oblong. Cuneate. Acute/apiculate/emarginate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: Secretory canals not visible.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Yellow-green. Axillary/ramiflorous. Scented.
Fruit: Orange/yellow/red. Ovoid/ellipsoid/obovoid/globose. 1 – 2.5 cm long. 0.5 – 1.0 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Riverine and lowland forest. Woodland. Thicket.
Distr: C, EA, LN, LT. Tropical and Southern Africa.
Notes: Very variable species. Stamens free.
Uses: The wood is used for building poles, firewood, charcoal, tool handles and spoons. Fruits are edible and are used for the preparation of a local brew. Leaves and flowers have been tested for antibiotic properties. An infusion from roots is mixed with milk and drunk by women for abdominal pains during pregnancy or soon after delivery.
Garcinia semseii Verdc.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NR.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Msengela (H).
Bole: Straight. Medium. To 20 m.
Bark: Grey/brown.
Slash: Yellow latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 1 – 2 cm.
Lamina: Medium/large. (12 -) 19 – 25 × (4.5 -) 7 – 16.5 cm. Elliptic. Cuneate. Acute. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: NR.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Pale yellow. Ramiflorous. Dioecious/hermaphrodite.
Fruit: Subglobose. 5 cm long. 4 cm in diameter. Warted.
Ecology: Lowland, submontane and montane forest.
Distr: EA (Ng, Udz) only.
Notes: NR.
Uses: The wood is used for firewood, building poles, tool handles and spoons. Fruits are edible. The sap produced from bark yields yellow dye. The tree is suitable for amenity.
Garcinia smeathmannii (Planch. & Triana) Oliv.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: G. polyantha Oliv. in part.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mfilafila (H).
Bole: Medium/large. To 30 m.
Bark: Grey/yellowish/red-brown. Smooth.
Slash: Yellow/red exudate.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: (0.8 -) 1 – 3 cm. Channelled.
Lamina: Medium. 8 – 35 × 2.5 – 15 cm. Oblong/ovate/elliptic. Cuneate/rounded/cordate. Obtuse/acuminate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: Resin canals scarcely visible.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White/pink. Axillary/ramiflorous fascicles. Dioecious.
Fruit: Purple/green becoming yellow. Subglobose. (1 -) 2 – 2.5 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Riverine forest. Woodland.
Distr: LN, LT, LV. Tropical Africa.
Notes: Stamens in 4 bundles. Pedicels and sepals crimson. The local name Mfilafila means tree with latex.
Uses: Building poles, firewood, tool handles. Fruits are edible.
Garcinia volkensii Engl.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: G. albersii Engl., G. usambarensis Engl.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mbuni, Mndee-mzize (S), Mbarambambo (C), Mtowiri (C).
Bole: Branched. Small/medium. To 20 m.
Bark: Grey/brown. Smooth.
Slash: Pale yellow. White/yellow latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite/whorled.
Petiole: 0.3 – 1.8 cm. Angled and narrowly winged.
Lamina: Medium/small. 4 – 20 × 1.5 – 8 cm. Oblong/ovate. Cuneate/rounded. Acute/apiculate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Resin canals.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Cream/green-white/pink. Infloresence in axillary cymes. Dioecious.
Fruit: Green becoming yellow/orange/brown. Ovoid berry 1 – 3 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Submontane, montane and upper montane forest.
Distr: C, EA, N, LT, LV. Eastern and Central Tropical Africa.
Notes: Twigs stiff, grooved, 3 – 4 angled.
Uses: The wood is hard and used for building poles, firewood, charcoal, tool handles and spoons. Fruits are edible. The bark produces yellow dye. The tree is used for shade and ornamental purposes.
Harungana madagascariensis Lam. ex Poir.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NC.
Syn. other: Included in Hypericaceae in FTEA and TTCL.
Local names: Mbura, Mdamudamu (Sw), Mkuntu (S), Mtunu (T).
Bole: Branched/straight/crooked/slightly buttressed. Small/large. To 30 m.
Bark: Brown. Slightly fissured. Soft.
Slash: Pale pink/orange brown/red brown with white streaks. Smooth. Soft. Thin. Orange/red latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: Up to 2.7 cm.
Lamina: Medium. 6.5 – 20 × 4.5 – 10 cm. Ovate/lanceolate. Cuneate/cordate. Acuminate. Entire. Glabrous/hairy. Glandular/stellate.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: NR.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White. Sweet scented. Terminal. Corymbose-cymose panicle. Hermaphrodite.
Fruit: Yellow/orange. Spherical drupe. 0.4 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Lowland, submontane and montane forest. Pioneer.
Distr: C, EA, LN, LT, LV. Tropical Africa. Madagascar.
Notes: Large trees in undisturbed forest do not have orange latex in the slash.
Uses: The wood is used for timber, building poles, tool handles and wooden spoons. The leaves are rubbed on the head to cure headache. The sap is used in the treatment of scabies and tapeworm. Leaves are also used to treat diarrhoea, gonorrhoea, sore throats and haemorrhages. Leaves and bark are used in the treatment of bloody diarrhoea by the WaLuhya. The bark is used to treat malaria. Roots are used to hasten breast development in young women. The bark and roots are boiled and the infusion is taken twice a day to interrupt menses. The tree is also important in agroforestry.
Mammea usambarensis Verdc.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: Ochrocarpus africanus sensu Brenan non Oliv.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: NR.
Bole: Straight. Medium/large. To 30 m.
Bark: Grey/red-brown. Smooth/flaking.
Slash: Red. Yellow latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 1.1 – 1.4 cm.
Lamina: Medium. 13.5 – 29 × 6.4 – 9 cm. Oblong/elliptic. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: Translucent lines and dots in a network.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White. Axillary. Fascicles. Dioecious.
Fruit: Pale green/yellow. Subglobose. 4 – 6.5 cm long. 3.5 – 7 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Montane forest.
Distr: EA only (WUs, P).
Notes: Close to the West African M. africana, but the pyrene is thinner.
Uses: The wood is used for timber, firewood, building poles, tool handles, spoons and bedsteads. Fruits are edible. The bark has yellow dye. The tree is used for shade.
Symphonia globulifera L.f.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: S. gabonensis (Vesque) Pierre
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mziwaziwa (Sw).
Bole: Straight/stilt roots. Large. To 40 m.
Bark: Yellow/green/grey. Smooth.
Slash: Yellow/orange latex.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 0.5 – 2 cm.
Lamina: Small/medium. 5 – 12.5 × 1 – 5 cm. Oblong/elliptic/lanceolate. Cuneate. Acuminate/obtuse. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Resin canals not visible.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: Red. Terminal cymes on short lateral branches. Hermaphrodite.
Fruit: Green/red/brown. Ellipsoid/globose. 1.5 – 4.5 cm long, 2 – 3.5 cm in diameter. Warty.
Ecology: Montane and upper montane forests.
Distr: EA, LV. Western and Central Africa, Uganda. South and Central America. Antilles.
Notes: Numerous parallel nerves. The local name Mziwaziwa means a tree which has latex.
Uses: The wood is used for timber, firewood, spoons, tool handles and building poles. The bark produces yellow dye. The tree is suitable for amenity and swamp planting.
Visimia orientalis Engl.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NC.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: Mguwe (Sw), Uhakowa-ngoto (S).
Bole: Small. To 10 m.
Bark: NR.
Slash: NR.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: 0.5 – 1 cm.
Lamina: Small/medium. 4 – 13 × 1 – 7 cm. Elliptic. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire. Glabrous/hairy beneath.
Domatia: Absent.
Glands: Black glandular dots in lamina.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White marked with pink/red. Terminal cymes. Hermaphrodite.
Fruit: Green/pink berry. 0.8 cm in diameter.
Ecology: Lowland forest. Thicket.
Distr: C, EA. Southeast Kenya.
Notes: The local name Uhakowa-ngoto means sheep’s bath.
Uses: The wood is used for house building, wooden spoons, tool handles and firewood. A root decoction is taken as a remedy of lassitude, tongue disease and as a tonic. The bark is pounded, mixed with butter and rubbed on the skin of a person suffering from scabies.
Vismia pauciflora Milne-Redh.
Syn. FTEA: NC.
Syn. TTCL: NR.
Syn. other: NR.
Local names: NR.
Bole: Small. To 10 m.
Bark: NR.
Slash: NR.
Leaf: Simple. Opposite.
Petiole: NR.
Lamina: Small. 4.0 – 6.5 × 2.2 – 3.9 cm. Elliptic. Cuneate. Acuminate. Entire. Glabrous.
Domatia: NR.
Glands: Scattered and submarginal black glandular dots in leaves.
Stipules: Absent.
Thorns & Spines: Absent.
Flower: White. Terminal cymes. Hermaphrodite.
Fruit: NR.
Ecology: Lowland forest. Thicket.
Distr: C only (Rondo). Mozambique.
Notes: Leaves deciduous.
Uses: NR.
Last Updated: 17 June 2017