Kampala Tree and Palm Directory

Tree Species
Common Name
Tree Description
Tree Uses


+ Tree Species

Tectona grandis

+ Tree Family


+ Ecology

The natural range is wet tropical lowland forests of Burma, India, Thailand, and on the Indonesian islands. It grows in a variety of soils but deep soils with good drainage are necessary for satisfactory growth. In Uganda, it has been grown in trials in Jinja, Hoima and Gulu Districts, and it has also been planted in Arua and Moyo Districts. It now produces viable seed. In Kampala, Teak can be found within Uganda Golf course club, Makerere University, Kitante courts along Kyadondo road among other places.

+ Description

A large deciduous tree over 30 m in height in favorable growing conditions. The bole is often buttressed and may be fluted to aconsiderable height, up to 15 m long below the first branches , and up to 1 m in diameter at breast height. Crown open with many small branches.

BARK: brown on the bole, distinctlyfibrous and with shallow longitudinal fissures.

LEAVES: 4-sided, branchlets bear the very large leaveswhich are shed for 3-4months during the latter half of the dry season. Leaves are shinyabove, hairy below, vein network clear, about 30 x 20 cm butyoung leaves up to 1 m long.

FLOWERS: small, about 8 mmacross, mauve-whiteand arranged in large flowering heads, about 45 cm long, found on the topmost branches in the unshadedpart of the crown.

FRUIT: round, hard and woody, enclosed inan inflated, bladder-likecovering, pale green at first, and then brownafter maturity.           

+ Uses

Edible: the leaves are added to the water in which unripe jackfruit is boiled prior to making the Javanese dish 'Gudeg thus adding a reddish colour to the jackfruit, a red dye obtained from boiling the wood shavings of the tree can be used to colour Easter eggs, the leaves act as a host for Rhizopus spores in Tempeh manufacture. http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php id=Tectona+grandis

Root bark and the young leaves produce a yellowish-brown or reddish dye which is used for paper, clothes and matting.

The leaves are used for packing food products in the markets.

Sawdust from teakwood is used as incense in Java though it may irritate the skin. The sawdust is also used to produce active carbon.

The wood provides timber for bridge building and other construction in contact with water such as docks, quays, piers and floodgates in fresh water, house building for interior and exterior joinery (windows, solid panel doors and framing) and is used for floors exposed to light to moderate pedestrian traffic and for garden furniture.

Provides building poles, transmission line poles, fence posts, wallboards, beams, woodwork, boxes, musical instruments, toys, railway sleepers and railcar construction.

Teakwood is used in the manufacture of charcoal and fuel wood.

Medicine: wood, an oil extracted from the roots, the bark, flowers, an oil extracted from the seeds, the leaves, an oil extracted from the tender shoots, and the seeds. http://tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php id=Tectona+grandis, http://www.worldagroforestry.org/treedb/AFTPDFS/Tectona_grandis.PDF

An ornamental for its large leaves and spreading flower clusters.

Agroforestry: can be used for intercropping, roots and leaves are added to the soil as fertilizer.

+ Propagation

Seeds, Stumps (12-18 months).

+ Management

Coppicing, thinning, and weeding. Shoots can reach 3 m in 2 years.

+ Remarks

It's one of the trees that provides the most useful timbers in the world. In Uganda, plantation trials have not been very promising, but it seems to do well in low-altitude areas along the Nile in North Western Region. The tree does well in most parts of Uganda when planted as individual shade trees.

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