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  Acacia dealbata Link
Vernacular name  Wattle (Malayalam); Wattle (Tamil) (Chacko et al., 2002).
Common name  Silver green wattle, Silver wattle (Chacko et al., 2002; Bose et al., 1998).
Synonyms  Acacia decurrens var. dealbata (Link) F. Muell. ex Maiden, Racosperma dealbata (Link) Pedley (Chacko et al., 2002).
Family  Leguminosae
Subfamily  Mimosoideae
Origin  Native of Australia.
Distribution  Planted extensively in Nilgiris, Kumaon hills, Simla, Darjeeling and Shillong (Chacko et al., 2002). Though a native of Australia, it is naturalised in Meghalaya and Niligris in India (Bose et al., 1998).
Description  It is a slender evergreen tree attaining a 12 m height and breast height diameter of 38 cm. It is fast growing and adapted to cool climates (FRI,1983; Chacko et al., 2002). Crown is elongated, oval and dense (Bose et al., 1998).
Flowering season  February to June (Bose et al., 1998).
Fruiting season  March to April (Chacko et al., 2002). June (Khullar et al., 1991).
Flowers  Flower heads globose, 4-6 mm diameter, yellow, fragrant, in profuse axillary and terminal panicles (Bose et al., 1998).
Fruits  Oblong, 4-8 cm long, flat reddish brown, often curved or coiled (Bose et al., 1998). Pods are straight or curved, flattened, 5.0-7.5 cm long, slightly constricted between the seeds (CSIR, 1948).
Fruit type  Pod.
Seeds  Longitudinal, funicle as long as seeds (Bose et al., 1998).
Seed length  No information (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed width  No information (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed thickness 
Seed weight  50,000 (Kindt et al., 1997; Chacko et al., 2002) to 83,000 seeds/kg (FRI, 1983; Chacko et al., 2002; Kullar et al., 1991).
Seed dispersal  Ants and birds.
Seed Collection  Collect the pods from the trees by beating with a stick (FRI, 1983; Chacko et al., 2002). Seeds are usually collected in the month of June (Srivastava et al., 2001).
Transportation of seeds  Seeds can be packed in cotton / jute / polythene bags and transported (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed processing  The pods are sun dried and seeds extracted by trampling or beating with a stick. The seeds are cleaned of pod fragments and debris by winnowing (FRI, 1983; Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed storage  Orthodox (Kindt et al., 1997; Chacko et al., 2002). Seeds can be stored in closed aluminium / plastic containers (Chacko et al., 2002).
Viability period  Seeds retain viability for more than a year in sealed tins under ambient temperatures (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed emptiness  No information (Chacko et al., 2002).
Seed pre treatment  Seeds are immersed in hot water (80oC) for a minute and then in cold water for 24 hrs (Chacko et al., 2002). Seeds may also be treated with concentrated sulfuric acid for 2 min (Ram Parkash et al., 1998).
Germination type  Epigeal (FRI, 1983; Chacko et al., 2002).
Germination percentage  70 to 100 (Carlowitz, 1991; Chacko et al., 2002). 68% (Khullar et al., 1991).
Germination period  No information (Chacko et al., 2002). 90 days (Kullar et al., 1991).
Nursery technique  The pretreated seeds are sown in plastic trays filled with vermiculite and watered. When the seedlings are 4 to 5 cm high, they are potted in polythene bags of size 20 x 10 cm filled with soil (Chacko et al., 2002).
Method of propagation  Direct sowing or planting out entire, 5-8 cm tall nursery raised seedlings with a ball of earth or in polythene bags, in July or in pits 30 cm3 spaced 1.8 x 1.8 m to 2.7 x 2.7 m (Ram Parkash et al., 1998).
Vegetative propagation  Rooting of cuttings. Root suckers (Brandis, 1921).
Pests  A total of 97 species from 36 families including Cerambycidae, Curculionidae, Chrysomelidae, Psyllidae and Geometridae are reported from the species (Bashford, 1997). A species of Psylla affect the seeds (Berg et al., 1982).
Medicinal properties  Suitable for pharmaceutical purpose and has been used as a remedy in bronchial diseases.
Uses  It is used in farms for windbreaks and erosion control. It is also planted as an ornamental tree. The wood is excellent for pulping, can be used for making furniture and as a fuel (Chacko et al., 2002). Flowers are used for the preparation of mimosa perfume, which resembles ylang-ylang, though slightly coarse. The bark is used for tanning (Bose et al., 1998). The tree yields a viscous gum of high quality which closely resemble gum arabic (CSIR, 1948).
Wood properties  Wood is moderately hard and light red. Pores moderate sized, often in short linear groups surrounded by pale rings. Medullary rays short, fine and moderately broad, well marked on a radial section (Gamble, 1922).
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