African Blackwood Facts

African Blackwood Facts
African Blackwood is deciduous tree that belongs to the legume family. It can be found in 26 countries in the central and southern parts of Africa. African Blackwood grows in deciduous forests, savannas and rocky areas. Over-harvesting of African Blackwood and habitat destruction (due to accelerated development of agriculture) led to drastic decline in the number of these plants in the wild. African Blackwood is listed as near threatened, which means that it may become endangered in the near future.
Interesting African Blackwood Facts:
African Blackwood produces multiple trunks with numerous branches covered with spines. It can reach 20 to 30 feet in height. Trunk has 2 to 3 feet in diameter.
African Blackwood has grey, furrowed bark. Thin, yellowish sapwood surrounds deep purple or brownish-black heartwood, located in the middle of the tree.
African Blackwood has strong root system that stabilizes the soil. Bacteria in the nodules on the root absorb atmospheric nitrogen and convert it into the form that is available for the plants. This process increases fertility of the soil.
African Blackwood has green, pinnate leaves composed of 6 to 9 small, oval leaflets.
African Blackwood is deciduous tree that sheds its leaves at the beginning of the dry season. New foliage starts to grow at the end of dry season.
African Blackwood blooms during the spring. It produces miniature, fragrant white flowers arranged in clusters. African Blackwood often grows individually, away from other African Blackwood trees and it usually reproduces via self-pollination.
Fruit of African Blackwood is oblong pod. It is pointed at the top and filled with one or two seed.
Heartwood of African Blackwood is known as granadilla. It is one of the hardest and densest types of wood in the world. This heartwood is very expensive because of the small size of African Blackwood tree and its slow growth.
Certain African tribes use heartwood of African Blackwood for the manufacture of intricate, ceremonial carvings. Created items are very popular among tourists.
African Blackwood is used for the manufacture of musical instruments such as clarinets, oboes, bagpipes and flutes. Unfortunately, only 10% of the African Blackwood tree can be transformed into the musical instruments. Remaining 90% of tree is often discarded as waste.
African Blackwood is used for the manufacture of luxurious casings for the cell phones in Russia.
African Blackwood is used in the industry of fine furniture, walking sticks, bobbins and tool handles.
Utensils made of African Blackwood were found in the tombs of various Egyptian pharaohs.
African Blackwood is used in treatment of various disorders in the folk medicine. Bark is used in treatment of diarrhea, while root can alleviate headache and common cold.
African Blackwood is long-lived tree that reaches maturity at the age of 60 years.

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