Senegalia catechu

Senegalia catechu
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Senegalia
Species: S. catechu
Binomial name
Senegalia catechu
(L.f.) P.J.H.Hurter & Mabb.
varieties
  • Senegalia catechu var. catechu (L.f.) P.J.H.Hurter & Mabb.
  • Senegalia catechu var. sundra (L.f.) Willd.[1]
Range of Senegalia catechu
Synonyms[2]

Senegalia catechu is a deciduous, thorny tree which grows up to 15 m (50 ft) in height.[3] The plant is called khair [4] in Hindi, and kachu in Malay, hence the name was Latinized to "catechu" in Linnaean taxonomy, as the type-species from which the extracts cutch and catechu are derived.[5] Common names for it include catechu, cachou, cutchtree, black cutch, and black catechu.

Senegalia catechu is found in Asia, China, India and the Indian Ocean area.[2]

Through derivatives of the flavanols in its extracts, the species has lent its name to the important catechins, catechols and catecholamines of chemistry and biology.

Uses

Food

Senegalia catechu flowers

The tree's seeds are a good source of protein.[6] Kattha (catechu), an extract of its heartwood, is used as an ingredient to give red color and typical flavor to paan. Paan, from the word pān in Hindi: पान, is an Indian and Southeast Asian tradition of chewing betel leaf (Piper betle) with areca nut and slaked lime paste.

Fodder

Branches of the tree are quite often cut for goat fodder and are sometimes fed to cattle.[2]

[6]

Medicinal uses

The heart wood and bark of the tree are used in traditional medicine.[7] A wood extract called catechu is used in traditional medicine for sore throats and diarrhea.[3] The concentrated aqueous extract, known as khayer gum or cutch, is astringent.[8] It is used in Ayurvedic medicine.[9] In ayurveda, it is used for rasayana ( rejuvenation treatments). It is also used for its actions like anti-dyslipidemic, anthelminthic, anti-inflammatory, anti-diuretic,anti-pruritic, coolant, taste promoting, enhancing digestion  and curing skin disorders.[10]

Wood

Senegalia catechu trunks

The tree is often planted for use as firewood and charcoal and its wood is highly valued for furniture and tools.[3] The wood has a density of about 0.88 g/cm³.[11]

Other uses

Its heartwood extract is used in dyeing and leather tanning, as a preservative for fishing nets, and as a viscosity regulator for oil drilling.[3]

Cultivation

Senegalia catechu pods

The tree can be propagated by planting its seeds, which are soaked in hot water first. After about six months in a nursery, the seedlings can be planted in the field.[3]

See also

References

  1. ^ hear.org
  2. ^ a b c International Legume Database & Information Service (ILDIS)
  3. ^ a b c d e www.fao.org
  4. ^ www.haryana-online.com
  5. ^ [www.yourdictionary.com] Derivation of word from Malay
  6. ^ a b World AgroForestry Database
  7. ^ [envis.frlht.org]
  8. ^ British Pharmacopoeia, Department of Health, British Pharmacopoeia Commission, London. The Stationary Office,(1999)
  9. ^ [books.google.com]
  10. ^ [www.frlht.org]
  11. ^ FAO Appendix 1

External links

Media related to Senegalia catechu at Wikimedia Commons Data related to Acacia catechu at Wikispecies