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Common Names: Sickle Bush, Kansalosalo, Kaweyi, Mubanga, Muselesele, Katenge,
Family: Fabaceae (Legume Family) Mimosoideae


Growth Form, Habitat and Distribution 
An untidy, spiny semi-deciduous shrub or small tree , usually multi-stemmed with a feathery crown. Often forms thickets by suckering, usually on abandoned farm land. Occurs all over Zambia, usually at lower altitudes in Munga woodland, and in most woodland types and Baikiaea forest. 

Size     Height up to 10m, usually smaller, spread 4 to 8m.
Bark    Grey-black, fissured, with marked anastomosing, vertical ridges. 
Leaves    Compound, bipinnate, 8 to 20cm, with 6 to 19 pairs of pinnae, each with 8 to 40 opposite pairs of small (0.1 to 1.0cm), narrow, oblong-sickle-shaped, dark green leaflets closing up at midday. Petiole up to 2cm. Spines straight, grey.
Flowers    In axillary spikes (2 to 5cm), with sterile, pink spike above a short bright yellow fertile catkin. The flower hangs upside down, August to December but often later.
Fruit     Black-brown twisted pods (up to 10cm), constricted between seeds, in contorted clusters, ripening May to September, later falling to the ground with 4 to 6 flat, glossy-brown seeds.
Uses    Makes a good charcoal. The inner bark makes a good string and the roots are used for baskets. The leaves and roots used in traditional medicine. 
Other species in Zambia: None but numerous sub-species and the genus is widespread across Africa and the tropical Old World.

Dichrostachys cinnerea

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