Online Manual for the Forest Tree Seeds of Kerala

A Kerala Forest Department Funded Project

Dr. K Sudhakara
Professor & Head of the Department
Dept. of Silviculture & Agroforestry
College of Forestry, Kerala Agricultural University, Thrissur 680 656
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Scientific Name  Albizia procera (Roxb.) Benth.
Vernacular name  Jalavaka, Vellavaka (Malayalam) (Sasidharan, 2004); Kondavagei (Tamil) (Bose et al., 1998).
Common name  White siris.
Synonyms  Mimosa elata, Mimosa procera Roxb. (Sasidharan, 2004).
Family  Leguminosae
Subfamily  Mimosoideae
Distribution  Found in sub Himalayan tracts from Yamuna Eastwards to West Bengal, Satpura range, South India and Gujarat (CSIR, 1948).
Description  A large deciduous tree, 18 to 24 m in height (CSIR, 1948).
Flowering season  May to August (CSIR, 1948).
Fruiting season  February to May (CSIR, 1948).
Flowers  Flowers small heads, forming ample deltoid terminal panicles crowded in peduncled corymbs (CSIR, 1948). Heads 1-5 together, in large terminal and axillary panicles; flowers white, 10-12 mm long; corolla about 5 mm long, petals oblong-lanceolate (Bose et al., 1998).
Fruits  Pod 8-20 cm long, reddish brown, 8 to 12 seeded (CSIR, 1948).
Fruit type  Pod.
Seeds  Flat, elliptical to nearly orbicular, hard, smooth, pale brown, with a hard leathery testa (CSIR, 1948).
Seed length 
Seed width 
Seed thickness 
Seed weight  21000-24000 seeds/kg (CSIR, 1948).
Seed dispersal 
Seed Collection  The pods fall to the ground during the month of May. The ripe pods are collected from the trees before they dehisce during the month of April (CSIR, 1948).
Transportation of seeds 
Seed processing  The pods are dried in the sun, beaten and winnowed to obtain the seeds (CSIR, 1948).
Seed storage 
Viability period 
Seed emptiness 
Seed pre treatment  Dormancy is due to a water soluble inhibitor present in the seed coat, in addition to the presence of an impermeable seed coat and micropylar plug (Kannan et al., 1996). The seeds should be soaked in cold water for 48 hrs (Edwards and Naithani, 1999). Four-minute boiling in water, followed by 24 hrs cold water dipping. Soaking in 100 ppm gibberellin solution for 24 hrs influence initial seedling growth (Gopal Shukla et al., 2007). A. procera seeds treated in hot water give 66% germination (Lokendra Singh and Khan, 2004). Mechanical scarification or 30 minutes concentrated sulfuric acid treatment give 100% germination. These treatments affect the ultrastructures of the hilar region and the testa surface; effects include removal of the hilar plug, and formation of cracks in the testa surface. The affected regions facilitate water uptake which results in 100% germination (Das and Saha, 1999). Scarification with concentrated H2SO4 for 10 or 20 min gave the largest germination percentage and vigour in A. procera (Kannan et al., 1996).
Germination type  Epigeal.
Germination percentage  50 to 80.66% germination by hot water treatment (Lokendra Singh and Khan, 2004).
Germination period 
Nursery technique  Seedling growth is enhanced significantly with the application of P fertilizer. The nodulation in terms of nodule number and size is also increased significantly with the application of P fertilizer (Uddin et al., 2007). Sand medium gives good vigour index for seedlings (Vanangamudi et al., 1998). Seeds sown in equal proportion of soil, sand and FYM give good germination and initial seedling growth (Gopal Shukla et al., 2007).
Method of propagation  By seeds.
Vegetative propagation 
Pests  Albizia procera seeds in storage recorded 28.0-30.5% damage by Bruchus bilineatopygus. To prevent this during long-term storage, sun-dried seeds should be treated with 0.1% malathion (Jayalaxmi Ganguli et al., 2000). Grubs of Bruchidius bilineatopygus cause heavy damage to the developing pods and seeds (Abraham et al., 1995). They cause damage by feeding on the endosperm and single grub feeds on 3-4 seeds in succession. Pupation takes place in seeds and adults escape through circular holes drilled on the pods. Field infestation of the pods was 55%. On storage the seeds extracted from infested pods showed a progressive increase in insect infestation.
Diseases  Alternaria alternata causes 34.30% inhibition in the germination of Albizia procera seeds (Kavita Tandon et al., 2001). 16 fungi belonging to 8 genera are recorded of which moulds are predominant eg. Trichothecium roseum, Fusarium avenaceum [Gibberella avenacea] etc. are present on seeds of Albizia procera. Application of Emisan control the infection (Punam Singh and Mehrotra, 1999).
Medicinal properties  The plant is used for stomach and intestinal diseases and during pregnancy. All parts of the plant are reported to show anti cancer activity (CSIR, 1948).
Uses  The leaves are said to be a source of condensed type of tannins. Wood is suited for structural purposes, flooring, and panelling (CSIR, 1948).
Wood properties  The sapwood is yellowish white and the heartwood is brown to dark brown. The wood is moderately hard to moderately heavy with shallowly interlocked grain and coarse texture. Annual rings not usually visible. Pores moderate sized and large, in narrow rings of soft tissue, uniformly distributed in small groups of a few, very prominent on a longitudinal section. Medullary rays fine, short, distant (Gamble, 1922).
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