MetadataShow full item record
CTA. 1992. Namibian ally?. Spore 40. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/45804
African countries with hot, arid climates or even those with waterlogged or salty clay soils may have an ally in a versatile tree species found in Namibia. Terminalia sericea has spread naturally over a former war-zone area that had been cleared...
African countries with hot, arid climates or even those with waterlogged or salty clay soils may have an ally in a versatile tree species found in Namibia. Terminalia sericea has spread naturally over a former war-zone area that had been cleared mechanically and by herbicide prior to 1978. Since that time the tree growth has been vigorous and the soil appears well restored. Terminalia sericea is a semi-deciduous tree 3-13 metres tall. It grows abundantly in less populated areas of northern Namibia as well as around the Kalahari desert. As long as it is not subject to heavy competition for light, the species thrives across a range of soil-composition moisture and drainage conditions. It is an aggressive colonizer forming dense pioneer thickets on new alluvial, eroded or deteriorated soils. The trees improve sites by draining waterlogged soils, enriching impoverished soils and shading out weeds, allowing climax species to move in. Its seeds regenerate readily as open sites become available. The tree has man useful qualities. The wood is yellow, grained, hard, heavy and very tough and the heartwood is durable, being both termite- and borer-proof. As well as the wood making good fencing and building material, the bark of Terminalia can be harvested and used also in construction as tieing strips. The roots have medicinal properties. Terminal serica is a potential candidate for reforestation, erosion control and agroforestry at similar sites in other African countries. ICRAF PO Box 30677 Nairobi, KENYA