Table of Contents
Ceratonia siliqua Linn. Family
Ceratonia siliqua Linn. English Name
Ceratonia siliqua Linn. Local Name
Ceratonia siliqua Linn. Description
A small evergreen tree. The leaves are compound with leaflets paired in groups of 3 to 5. The leaflets are arranged opposite each other on the main axis of the leaf. Leaflets are 3 to 5 cm long. The flowers occur in small bunches 5 to 7 cm long. Each flower is very small and greenish in color, appearing between October and November. The pods are large 7 to 30 cm long and 1 to 2 cm wide. The pods are thick and turgid. Seeds are embedded in the pulp within the pods. Pods mature in December. It can be reproduced both from seed and by vegetative means. The seed will remain viable for at least 5 years if stored in cool, dry conditions. Seed could be obtained from Pakistan Forest Institute, Peshawar where it has been planted in small blocks. A rather slow growing but excellent fodder tree. Pores are moderately sized in radial patches. Rays are unequal and irregularly distributed. The sapwood is white, and the heartwood is red having density hard, heavy with a calorific value of 4900 kcal/kg.
Ceratonia siliqua Linn. Distribution
has been successfully established in the subcontinent. In Pakistan it has been planted in the Punjab and is found as far north as Abbottabad and Peshawar in NWFP. It has a wide range of adaptability and will do well on a variety of soils within a dry, sub-tropical, temperate climate. It is damaged by hard frost, so it does best in a temperature range between 0 and 40°C. The tree does not do well where precipitation is below 300 mm. This tree is highly intolerant.
Ceratonia siliqua Linn. Uses
Because of its fodder production the tree has potential on poor sites. It must be protected from uncontrolled grazing and can be considered a good farm forestry tree, but its slow growth may restrict expansion in its use. Also used as fodder (both leaves and pods), fuel, gum, and medicinal.