Albizia falcataria (L.) Fosberg
Syn.: Albizia falcata (L.) Backer.
Albizia moluccana Riq.
Source: James A. Duke. 1983. Handbook of Energy Crops. unpublished.
- Folk Medicine
- Yields and Economics
- Biotic Factors
Timber tree, "one of the quickest-growing trees of Malaysia. It is
highly regarded as shade tree, sometimes used for coffee shade. It has also
been used to shade tea in Java, but its rapid growth may damage the tea during
drought. It has been suggested as cover for mine spoil. The wood is described
as soft but suitable for tea boxes. In Hawaii during the 1970's, about
1,000,000 board feet were rotary peeled and processed for core stock. It is
used for matches, match boxes, packing cases, lightweight pallets, shelves and
other general uses for certain grades of paper. It can substitute for pinewood
as a pulping source. Pulp: The fiber averages 1.15 mm long with thin walls,
giving it flexibility and good fiber to fiber bonding in paper. The soft,
low-density wood is easy to chip and yields much pulp with relatively low
chemical input. Because of its light color, only minimum bleaching is required
to achieve a good white paper. The woods are nonsiliceous, usually light
colored with some open pores, and produce a sawdust that may cause sneezing.
The wide ranging roots are said to taint the water supply with their peculiar
No data uncovered.
Mitchell and Rook (1979) report respiratory problems in people working
with the wood.
Tall deciduous tree to 30 m tall, 1 m in diameter. Leaves alternate,
bipinnate, 2330 cm long, rufose pubescent, the pinnae 2024, 510 cm long,
each with 3040 paired leaflets, sessile, obliquely oblong, 612 mm long, 35
mm broad, shortly acute. Panicles large, 2025 cm long, lateral, the numerous
flowers sessile, white, ca 1012 mm long; the calyx 5-toothed, corolla
5-lobate, ca 6 mm long; stamens filiform, more than 12 mm long; ovary narrow,
the style filiform. Pods 1013 cm long, 2 cm wide, flat, acute, green, turning
brown, papyraceous, dehiscent. Seeds 1520 per pod, reniform to oblong, ca 6
mm long, brown (Little, 1983). Seed ca 46,000/kg.
Reported from the Indochina-Indonesia Center of Diversity, Molucca
albizia, or cvs thereof, is reported to tolerate poor soils. With a
superficial root system, it is subject to windthrow (Duke, 1978).
Native to the eastern islands of the Indonesian archipelago (Moluccas)
and New Guinea, this species has been spread to Southeast Asia from Burma to
the Philippines, and introduced locally in tropical Africa and America.
Tree seems to thrive on many soils, alluvial soils, laterites, sandy
mining soil, and white sands. Ranging from Subtropical Moist to Wet through
Tropical Moist to Wet Forest Life Zones, probably tolerates annual
precipitation of 20 to 45 dm annual temperature of 20 to 28°C. Flowering in
Dec.Jan. in Sri Lanka. NAS (1979) says it needs at least 15 rainy days during
the driest 4 months.
The hard seeds may require scarification. Trees can be closely spaced
at 1,0002,000 trees/ha so that trunk grows straight and the crown closes
quickly, shading out weeds.
Growing fast enough to be considered a cash crop, it is harvested in the
Philippines after 7 or 8 years, then every 8 years from the coppice. The wood
is soft, light-colored and has a specific gravity of 0.300.35.
Trees 2 years old may attain 10 m height, 15 cm DBH, while 10-year old
trees may attain 30 m and 60 cm. Young plantations have yielded mean annual
increment of 2540 m3/ha is more than 50 m3 wood/yr. However, a mean annual
increment of 40 m3/yr is more likely in 812 yr rotations. Palit reports yield
potential of 40 m3/yr at 35 yrs in North Bengal, assuming 50% Survival and establishment at 2 x 2 m.
In a 9-year old stand, the above ground biomass was 102 MT/ha, the leaf
biomass was 1.6 MT, leaf litter ca 5.2 MT making up ca 62% of the total litter.
Annual net productivity was ca 20 MT/ha, productivity worthy of investigation
for energy potential, especially if the tree has a high rate of N-fixation.
These data derive from a Mindanao site with annual precipitation ca 45 dm,
annual temperature ca 27°C, elevation 50100 m on reddish brown ratozol over
andesite. In a head-on study, the Albizia biomass compares with 18 MT for
Gmelina plantation and 14 MT/ha for dipterocarp forest (Kawahara et al, 1981).
Annual stem increment was maximum in three-year old plantations, tapering off
thereafter. Nodules of N-fixing bacteria occur on the roots. Reported yields
run from 2.655 m3/ha/yr (Webb et al., 1980; Fenton et al., 1977).
On the Malayan Peninsula, the black lotong monkey (Semnopithecus) eats
the shoot tips, sometimes to the extent of defoliating and killing the tree.
The tree has been known to survive in the Asian weed, Imperata, but
cannot be depended on to grow in thick lalang or kill out that grass. The tea
pest, Helopeltis, can live on it. There have been frequent attacks by
caterpillars, deer and monkey in Indonesian plantations adjacent to
rainforests. Browne (1968), lists: Fungi. Armillaria mellea, Calonectria
theae, Corticium salmonicolor, Fomes noxius, Ganoderma lucidum, G.
pseudoferreum, Helicobasidium compactum, Irpex subvinosus, Macrophomina
phaseoli, Nectria pulcherrima, Physalospora rhodina, Pleiochaeta albiziae,
Poria hypolateritia, Thanatephorus cucumeris, Ustulina deusta. Acarina.
Tetranychus telarius. Coleoptera. Hypomeces squamosus, Xyleborus
fornicatus, Xylosandrus morigerus, Xystrocera globosa. Hemiptera
Ferrisia virgata, Parthenolecanium persicae. Lepidoptera. Achaea
janata, Ericeia inangulata, Hypanartia blanda, H. hecabe, Indarbela
quadrinotata, Rhesala moestalis, Semiothisa emersaria, Zeuzera coffeae.
Nematoda. Meloidogyne spp., Pratylenchus coffeae. Mammalia.
Callosciurus notatus, Tupaia glis.
Complete list of references for Duke, Handbook of Energy Crops
- Browne, F.G. 1968. Pests and diseases of forest plantations trees.
Clarendon Press, Oxford.
- Duke, J.A. 1978. The quest for tolerant germplasm. p. 161. In: ASA Special
Symposium 32, Crop tolerance to suboptimal land conditions. Am. Soc. Agron.
- Fenton, R., Roper, R.E., and Watt, G.R. 1977. Lowland tropical hardwoods.
External Aid Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Wellington, N.Z.
- Kawahara, T., Kanazawa, Y., and Sakura, S. 1981. Biomass and net production of
man-made forests in the Philippines. J. Jap. For. Soc. 63(9):320327.
- Little, E.L. Jr. 1983. Common fuelwood crops: a handbook for their
identification. McClain Printing Co., Parsons, WV.
- Mitchell, J.C. and Rook, A. 1979. Botanical dermatology. Greenglass Ltd.,
- N.A.S. 1979. Tropical legumes: resources for the future. National Academy of
Sciences, Washington, DC.
- Webb, D.E., Wood, P.J., and Smith, J. 1980. A guide to species selection for
tropical and sub-tropical plantations. Tropical Forestry Papers 15. CFI,
Last update December 19, 1997