Guild: pi

Life form: large, emergent tree Max. height: > 50 m (Taylor 1960) Max. diameter: > 150 cm (Taylor 1960) Leaf: alternate, simple, elliptic, mesophyll (9 x 12 cm), entire to slightly undulate, coriaceous, slightly pubescent underneath, juvenile leaf very different, oblong to lanceolate (7 x 25 cm), serrate, herbaceous, pilose Inflorescence: axillary, peduncle (male inflorescence up to 22 cm long, female inflorescence 1 x 4 cm) Flower: dioecious; small

Fruit: infructescence composed of small achenes Seed: data unavailable

Other: the dark foliage and heavy branches make the crown rather conspicuous. The bark has numerous lenticels and becomes scaly. The slash exudes a sticky latex. The roots feature long yellow, horizontal lenticels.


Continent: Benin to Mozambique (Voorhoeve 1965)

Upper Guinea: Senegal to Togo (Voorhoeve 1965) Forest type: moist evergreen forest, moist semi-deciduous forest, dry semi-deciduous forest, derived savanna-woodland, riverine forest. A Red List species (lower risk).

Its abundance decreases with rainfall and altitude (regression analysis). The species is an intense light demander (De Rouw 1991), but does best under light shade. It prefers well-drained soils and is intolerant of impeded drainage (Taylor 1960).


This is one of the few pioneer species whose germination is strongly photoblastic (Kyereh et al. 1993). It has a phanerocotylar epigeal foliaceous seedling type (cf. De la Mensbruge 1966). Most regeneration occurs in open places. Seedling growth is high and fairly constant over a large range of light environments (Swaine et al. 1997). A height growth of 1 m is not unusual in the first year. Young shoots are browsed by duiker (Taylor 1960).


Deciduousness: deciduous from December to January (Taylor 1960) Dispersal: by birds and bats (Taylor 1960) Timing: flowering period from December to March; fruiting period from March to May (Taylor 1960)


A timber species.

Data sources

Taylor (1960), Voorhoeve (1965), De la Mensbruge (1966), De Rouw (1991), Kyereh et al. (1993), Swaine et al. (1997), IUCN Red List (2000)

Nauclea diderrichii (De Wild. & T.Durand) Merrill

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