World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Senegalia catechu

Article Id: WHEBN0010398455
Reproduction Date:

Title: Senegalia catechu  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Caesalpinia digyna, Rhus pentaphylla, Rumex hymenosepalus, Quercus macrolepis, Bergenia crassifolia
Collection: Flora of Asia, Flora of Nepal, Plants Used in Ayurveda, Senegalia
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

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.
  • Senegalia catechu var. catechu (L.f.) P.J.H.Hurter & Mabb.
  • Senegalia catechu var. sundra (L.f.) Willd.[1]
Range of Senegalia catechu

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 1
    • Food 1.1
    • Fodder 1.2
    • Medicinal uses 1.3
    • Wood 1.4
    • Other uses 1.5
  • Cultivation 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5



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.


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


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]


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]


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


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b c International Legume Database & Information Service (ILDIS)
  3. ^ a b c d e
  4. ^
  5. ^ Derivation of word from Malay
  6. ^ a b World AgroForestry Database
  7. ^ "Plant Details". Retrieved 2014-10-04. 
  8. ^ British Pharmacopoeia, Department of Health, British Pharmacopoeia Commission, London. The Stationery Office, (1999)
  9. ^ Frawley, D.; Ranade, S. (2001). Ayurveda, Nature's Medicine. Lotus. p. 322.  
  10. ^ "Khadira (Acacia catechu) | National R & D Facility for Rasayana". Retrieved 2014-10-04. 
  11. ^ FAO Appendix 1

External links

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

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.