21 Jun Bauhinia thonningii
Scientific name: Bauhinia thonningii Schum. Syn. Piliostigma thonningii (Schum.) Milne-Redh.
Distribution/conservation status: occurs in savanna areas and derived savanna in the forest zone. Not assessed by the IUCN red list.
Common names: Camel’s foot (English), Abafe (Yoruba), Kalgoo (Hausa), Okpachu (Igbo).
Fruits/seeds: brown, woody, linear-oblong pod containing many dark brown, ellipsoid seeds.
Fruiting time: December – February.
Seed collection: fruits split open when ripe and seeds are easily collected under and around the parent tree.
Type of seed: orthodox.
Sowing method: take safety precautions to protect hands and face then scarify in sulphuric acid for 7 minutes, stirring constantly. Rinse and drain before sowing in trays or pots at a depth of 1 – 2cm.
Sowing medium: forest soil.
Germination period: 10 – 14 days.
Germination percentage: 80 – 90%.
Growth/development: seedlings require full sun and can be planted out after 6 weeks. Young trees begin to flower and fruit after 4 – 5 years.