Allanblackia floribunda

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Allanblackia floribunda
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Clusiaceae
Genus: Allanblackia
Species:
A. floribunda
Binomial name
Allanblackia floribunda

Allanblackia floribunda, known in English as 'tallow tree', is a species of flowering plant in the family Clusiaceae that has been long used in traditional African medicine to treat hypertension. [1] It is a common understory tree in rain-forests in western central Africa - from Sierra Leone to W Cameroons, and on into the DR Congo and Uganda. The medium-sized tree (up to 30 meters tall) is evergreen and dioecious (male and female flowers on different plants). The wood is said to be resistant to termites but is not particularly durable. It is fairly easy to work and finishes well but it is of little commercial importance though it has appeared on the market in Liberia as ‘lacewood’. [2]

Uses

The wood is used in Nigeria in hut-building for making walls, doors and window-frames, and in Liberia for planks. In Ghana small trees are cut for poles and find use as mine pit-props and bridge-piles. The twigs are used in Ghana as candlesticks, and the smaller ones as chew-sticks and tooth-picks in Ghana and Gabon. [2] The inner bark contains a sticky yellow resin. The bark has anodynal properties. In the Region it is pounded and rubbed on the body to relieve painful conditions. In Gabon a decoction is taken for dysentery and as a mouthwash for toothache and in Congo (Brazzaville) for stomach-pains. In Congo a decoction of the bark or the leaves is taken for cough, asthma, bronchitis and other bronchial affections while the lees from this preparation are rubbed over areas of pain after scarification.

The tree's fruit are not really edible but its seeds are the source of Allanblackia Oil long used by local populations. Nigeria is developing infrastructure for international-scale commercial use. It is estimated Nigeria produced about 50 tons of allanblackia oil in 2006. Domesticating Allanblackia floribunda is being attempted. Presently the seed is collected only from wild stands or from trees retained on farm land (When clearing land for cultivation trees are left and managed, especially for shading cocoa).

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References

  1. Bilanda, DC; Dimo, T; Dzeufiet Djomeni, PD; Bella, NM; Aboubakar, OB; Nguelefack, TB; Tan, PV; Kamtchouing, P (April 2010). "Antihypertensive and antioxidant effects of Allanblackia floribunda Oliv. (Clusiaceae) aqueous extract in alcohol- and sucrose-induced hypertensive rats". J. Ethnopharmacol. 128 (3): 634–40. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2010.02.025. PMID   20193752.
  2. 1 2 "Allanblackia floribunda Oliv. [family GUTTIFERAE]". JSTOR Global Plants.