Dacryodes edulis is a dioecious, shade loving, evergreen tree, indigenous to the Gulf of Guinea and widely cultivated in other tropical parts of Africa for its fruit. The edible fruit to which the plant owes its principal values is a rich source of nutrients such as lipids, vitamins and protein. The fruit yields a high content of fixed and essential oils. The fruits are highly consumed and traded locally and internationally, conferring enormous economic value on the plant. The plant has long been used in the traditional medicine of some African countries to treat various ailments such as wound, skin diseases, dysentery and fever.

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We are working on a subset of plants in the PFAF database identified as having the most potential for inclusion in such designs. We are adding search terms and icons to those plants pages, and providing a range of search options aligned to categories of plants and crop yields, with Help facilities including videos. It is evergreen and usually grows about m in height, with a short trunk and a deep, dense crown. The compound leaves are glossy. The bark is pale grey. The flowers are yellow and arranged in a large inflorescence.

The fruit is an ellipsoidal drupe and can be eaten raw, cooked, or roasted. Bush butter tree has long been used in traditional medicine to treat wounds, skin ailments, fever, ear trouble, tonsillitis, and dysentery among other conditions. Bark resin is used in perfumery, as an adhesive, as a waterproofing, etc. The tree is sometimes used as an ornamental. The wood of bush butter tree is used for tool handles, mortars, and carpentry. Canarium edule Hook.

Canarium mansfeldianum Engl. Canarium saphu Engl. Pachylobus albiflorus Guill. A pleasant, subacid flavour[ ]. The leathery shelled stone is surrounded by a pulpy, butyraceous pericarp about 5 mm thick which is the portion eaten, either raw, or cooked to form a sort of 'butter'[ ]. When placed in hot water it softens and swells and all the flesh then slides easily off the seed[ ]. The fruit flesh is softened by cell-wall-degrading enzymes. At temperatures of 60 - 85c this is accomplished in a matter of minutes; at room temperature, it takes 7 - 10 days, with bruising and microbes reducing this period to 3 days[ ].

Boiling inactivates the enzymes so that the pulp hardens[ ]. The fruit is usually salted and tastes like a warmed ripe avocado with a slightly sour flavour[ ]. It has a mild smell of turpentine and is oily with palmitic acid The fruit is up to 70mm long and 30mm wide[ ].

The seed kernel is also rich in oil of the same fatty acids and approximately in similar amounts[ ]. Carbon Farming - Staple Crop: protein-oil. Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally. The resin from the bark is used to treat parasitic skin diseases, jiggers etc[ 46 , ]. A bark-decoction is taken powdered with maleguetta pepper as an anti-dysenteric, and for anaemia, spitting blood and as an emmenagogue[ ].

The decoction is also used for making gargles and mouth-washes, for treating tonsillitis[ ]. The pulped-up bark is used as a wound cicatrizant[ ]. Combined with palm-oil, it is applied topically to relieve general pains and stiffness and to treat cutaneous conditions[ ].

The leaves are eaten raw with kola nut as an antiemetic[ ]. The leaf-sap is instilled into the ear for ear-trouble[ ]. A leaf-decoction is prepared as a vapour-bath for treating feverish stiffness with headache[ ]. Edible Shrubs provides detailed information, attractively presented, on over 70 shrub species.

They have been selected to provide a mix of different plant sizes and growing conditions. Most provide delicious and nutritious fruit, but many also have edible leaves, seeds, flowers, stems or roots, or they yield edible or useful oil. Oil Agroforestry Uses: The leaves and the remains of the fruits can provide considerable quantities of biomass to improve soil fertility.

Research carried out in the forest humid lowland of south Cameroon, showed that the peasant farmers use the tree as a good indicator of soils fertility[ ]. The plant's canopy can allow its integration into the traditional farming systems involving food crops, mainly shade tolerant species such as Xanthosoma saggittifolium, Colocosia esculenta etc[ ].

Other Uses: The bark is aromatic and on injury yields a resin[ 46 , ]. This is used in various ways - in perfumery; as an adhesive for mending broken earthenware; as a waterproofing the inner surface of calabashes; it can also be burnt as a primitive lamp-oil or bush-candle[ ]. The fruit contains about 1.

The wood contains an oil that on petrol-ether extraction has been found to be composed of fatty acids and their esters[ ]. The leaves are the source of a dye[ ]. The heartwood is greyish white to pinkish; it is not clearly demarcated from the sapwood. The wood is moderately heavy and elastic, the texture moderately coarse[ , , ]. It is somewhat difficult to work due to the presence of silica, rapidly blunting tools during sawing; planing may be problematic due to the interlocked grain; staining, polishing and gluing properties are good, it can be peeled satisfactorily.

It is used for axe-handles, occasionally for mortars, and is suitable for carpentry, etc[ , ]. The wood is used mainly for fuel[ ]. Other Systems: homegarden, multistrata. Carbon Farming. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 18 - 28c but can tolerate 14 - 35c[ ]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 1, - 3,mm, but tolerates 1, - 5,mm[ ].

The plant can be cultivated in a wide range of areas, since it adapts well to differences in day length, temperature, rainfall, soils and altitude[ ]. Seedlings can thrive in quite dense shade, but older trees grow well in partial shade or full sun[ ]. Grows in a wide range of soils, even succeeding in leached, infertile ferrallitic soils and swampy soils[ , , ].

Prefers a pH in the range 5 - 6. Seedling plants can commence fruiting when about 5 - 6 years old[ ]. Flowering time and duration depend on latitude and genotype. Some trees flower early, while others flower late and may produce blossoms continuously for several months[ ]. Yields of 20 - 50 kilos of fruit can be expected from each tree, with reports of kilos from 20 year old trees[ ].

The flowers open in the morning and pollen is shed within 1 - 2 hours, so pollination has to be effected quickly[ ]. Trees can be male, female, or hermaphrodite[ ]. Male trees may produce a limited number of female flowers, and thus some fruit[ ]. Blooms all year. Blooms repeatedly. Carbon Farming - Cultivation: regional crop. Management: standard. Celsius Fahrenheit:. Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Our new book to be released soon is Edible Shrubs.

Unless sown within a week, germination and vigour are greatly reduced[ ]. Sow the seed in light shade in a nursery seedbed or in individual containers.

Germination starts about 2 weeks after sowing and is epigeal. Early growth is vigorous - the seedlings growing rhythmically, extending by flushes. During a flush, the leaf form changes abruptly from cataphylls 0 - 3 per flush to normal leaves with 11 - 19 leaflets. The flush is usually brought to an end by the sudden transition from normal leaves to severely reduced leaves in which only one or two basal pairs of leaflets are extended[ ]. Cuttings have proved difficult[ ].

Air layering. It takes 4 - 6 months before the layer is ready to remove from the parent, and this should be done when the plant is not in active growth[ ].

French: safoutier, prunier, atang. Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Author G. Don H. For a list of references used on this page please go here A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page. What's this? This is a QR code short for Quick Response which gives fast-track access to our website pages.

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Dacryodes edulis

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We are working on a subset of plants in the PFAF database identified as having the most potential for inclusion in such designs. We are adding search terms and icons to those plants pages, and providing a range of search options aligned to categories of plants and crop yields, with Help facilities including videos. It is evergreen and usually grows about m in height, with a short trunk and a deep, dense crown. The compound leaves are glossy. The bark is pale grey.


Dacryodes edulis is a fruit tree native to Africa , sometimes called safou Cameroon , atanga Gabon , ube Nigeria , [2] African or bush pear or plum , nsafu , bush butter tree , or butterfruit. Dacryodes edulis is an evergreen tree attaining a height of 18—40 meters in the forest but not exceeding 12 meters in plantations. The bark is pale gray and rough with droplets of resin. The leaves are a compound with pairs of leaflets. The upper surface of the leaves is glossy. They are arranged in a large inflorescence.



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