Combretaceae

Description

Guild: pi

Life form: small to medium-sized tree Max. height: 15 m (herbarium) Max. diameter: 40 cm (herbarium) Leaf: alternate, simple, ovate with a blunt apex, microphyll (1-2 x 1.5-5 cm), entire, herbaceous, hairy midrib

Inflorescence: terminal, not branched

Flower: small; white; fragrant

Fruit: dry indehiscent, pendulous (0.7 x 1 cm), yellow-brown, 3-winged

Other: a twisted tree with flaking bark.

Distribution

Continent: Mali, Nigeria Upper Guinea: Ghana

Distribution type: continuous, widespread, in Upper Guinea present in 2 30' cells. This species is known only from four localities in the world: the Bandiagara scarps in Mali; the Yankari Game Reserve in Nigeria; and the dry forests at Bui and Akosombo in Ghana.

Forest type: dry forest, savanna woodland, savanna

Habitat

In the Yankari Game Reserve, in Nigeria, it occurs in more or less dense stands on slopes along watercourses. These slopes are very dry, sandy, and well-drained. The species is never found in or near the actual streambed. It is apparently fire sensitive and occurs in either places where it is protected from fire, such as on rocky hills, or where it shades out the fire-providing heliophilous grasses (Geerling 1984). In the Yankari Game Reserve, it covers several square kilometres and forms pure stands of coppice-like woodland. This is truly remarkable in a savanna where only exceptionally a single species dominates (Geerling 1984). The two sites in Ghana where this species was collected (see map) are both close to a river (Volta and Black Volta) but also above the wet season's high water level.

Phenology

Deciduousness: deciduous (Geerling 1984) Dispersal: by wind

It is relatively unpalatable to herbivores, and being deciduous, does not provide shade in the dry season (Geerling 1984).

Data sources

FWTA, Geerling (1984), Hawthorne (1995a), Hawthorne & Jongkind (2004)

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