Invasive Species Compendium

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Datasheet

Albizia procera
(white siris)

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Datasheet

Albizia procera (white siris)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 24 January 2022
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Albizia procera
  • Preferred Common Name
  • white siris
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Albizia procera is a fast-growing, semi-deciduous, nitrogen-fixing tree that has been widely introduced in tropical and subtropical regions of the world to be used as an ornamental, soil improver and fuelwood species. It has the...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
North of Cairns, Queensland, Australia.
TitleMature tree
CaptionNorth of Cairns, Queensland, Australia.
Copyright©Suzette Searle/CSIRO Forestry and Forest Products
North of Cairns, Queensland, Australia.
Mature treeNorth of Cairns, Queensland, Australia.©Suzette Searle/CSIRO Forestry and Forest Products
Albizia procera (white siris); Branches and foliage. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
TitleBranches and foliage
CaptionAlbizia procera (white siris); Branches and foliage. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
Copyright©Steve Fitzgerald (upollo)/via iNaturalist - CC BY-SA 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Branches and foliage. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
Branches and foliageAlbizia procera (white siris); Branches and foliage. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.©Steve Fitzgerald (upollo)/via iNaturalist - CC BY-SA 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Trinity Beach, Queensland, Australia. April 2016.
TitleFoliage
CaptionAlbizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Trinity Beach, Queensland, Australia. April 2016.
Copyright©coenobita/via iNaturalist - CC BY 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Trinity Beach, Queensland, Australia. April 2016.
FoliageAlbizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Trinity Beach, Queensland, Australia. April 2016.©coenobita/via iNaturalist - CC BY 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Habit. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.
TitleHabit
CaptionAlbizia procera (white siris); Habit. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.
Copyright©ritirene/via iNaturalist - CC BY 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Habit. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.
HabitAlbizia procera (white siris); Habit. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.©ritirene/via iNaturalist - CC BY 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Trunk. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
TitleTrunk
CaptionAlbizia procera (white siris); Trunk. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
Copyright©Steve Fitzgerald (upollo)/via iNaturalist - CC BY-SA 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Trunk. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
TrunkAlbizia procera (white siris); Trunk. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.©Steve Fitzgerald (upollo)/via iNaturalist - CC BY-SA 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Seedpods. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
TitleSeedpods
CaptionAlbizia procera (white siris); Seedpods. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
Copyright©Steve Fitzgerald (upollo)/via iNaturalist - CC BY-SA 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Seedpods. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.
SeedpodsAlbizia procera (white siris); Seedpods. Barron Gorge National Park, Kuranda, Queensland, Australia. August 2021.©Steve Fitzgerald (upollo)/via iNaturalist - CC BY-SA 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.
TitleFoliage
CaptionAlbizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.
Copyright©ritirene/via iNaturalist - CC BY 4.0
Albizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.
FoliageAlbizia procera (white siris); Foliage. Cayey, Puerto Rico. January 2022.©ritirene/via iNaturalist - CC BY 4.0
1. habit 
2. flowering branch 
3. part of leaf 
4. central flower 
5. marginal flower 
6: pod
TitleLine artwork
Caption1. habit 2. flowering branch 3. part of leaf 4. central flower 5. marginal flower 6: pod
CopyrightPROSEA Foundation
1. habit 
2. flowering branch 
3. part of leaf 
4. central flower 
5. marginal flower 
6: pod
Line artwork1. habit 2. flowering branch 3. part of leaf 4. central flower 5. marginal flower 6: podPROSEA Foundation

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Albizia procera (Roxb.) Benth.

Preferred Common Name

  • white siris

Other Scientific Names

  • Acacia elata Voigt
  • Acacia procera (Roxb.) Willd.
  • Albizzia procera nom. illeg.
  • Feuilleea procera (Roxb.) Kuntze
  • Lignum murinum-majus Rumph
  • Mimosa coriaria Blanco
  • Mimosa elata Roxb.
  • Mimosa procera Roxb.

International Common Names

  • English: red siris; safed siris; tall albizia; women-tongue
  • Spanish: acacia blanca; albicia; albicia blanca; albizia; algarrobo de la India
  • Chinese: huang dou shu

Local Common Names

  • Australia: forest siris; rain siris; tee-coma
  • Bangladesh: silkorai
  • Cuba: albizia; algarrobo de la India
  • Dominican Republic: carbonero
  • Indonesia: ki hiyang; wangkul; weru
  • Malaysia: oriang
  • Myanmar: kokko-sit; sit
  • Nepal: seto siris
  • Papua New Guinea: brown albizia
  • Philippines: akleng parang
  • South Africa: false lebbeck; forests siris
  • Thailand: suan; thingthon

EPPO code

  • ALBPR (Albizia procera)

Trade name

  • forest siris
  • safed siris

Summary of Invasiveness

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Albizia procera is a fast-growing, semi-deciduous, nitrogen-fixing tree that has been widely introduced in tropical and subtropical regions of the world to be used as an ornamental, soil improver and fuelwood species. It has the potential to spread by seeds and by root suckers and also coppices readily after damage. This tree has become an invasive weed in disturbed and natural environments because of its aggressive growth, high drought tolerance and wide adaptation to different environmental and soil conditions. In South Africa, A. procera invades subtropical coastal bush and riverbanks and is a Category 1 plant on the Regulation 15 Declared Weeds and Invader Plants list, meaning the plant may not occur on any land other than in biological control reserves and land-owners are obliged to control it. In Cuba, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, it is an aggressive colonizer of abandoned farmlands, pastures, roadsides and other highly disturbed sites.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Fabales
  •                         Family: Fabaceae
  •                             Subfamily: Mimosoideae
  •                                 Genus: Albizia
  •                                     Species: Albizia procera

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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The genus Albizia is a member of the legume family (Fabaceae), subfamily Mimosoideae. This subfamily comprises 82 genera and about 3335 species of shrubs and trees (rarely herbs) in which nitrogen-fixing is common (Stevens, 2016). The genus Albizia comprises approximately 150 species of mostly trees and shrubs native to tropical and subtropical regions of Asia and Africa (Parrotta, 2004).

Albizia is similar to Acacia, from which it differs by the stamens being fused as opposed to free in Acacia. The genus was named after Filippo del Albizzi, a Florentine nobleman who in 1749 introduced A. julibrissin into cultivation. A. procera (Roxb.) Benth. species epithet is derived from the Latin procerus - very tall or high, alluding to the height the species can attain.

Related species are A. canescens and A. lebbeck. A. procera is clearly distinguished from A. lebbeck by the smooth pale green or buff bark, larger leaves, more diffuse canopy, much smaller flowers and smaller, flatter red pods (Lowry and Seebeck, 1997).

Description

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Albizia procera is typically a small tree 7-15 m tall, but it can reach 30 m with a 9 m long straight or crooked bole 35-60 cm in diameter. The bark is smooth, pale grey-green, yellowish-green or brown with horizontal grooves, sometimes flaky in thin, small scales. The underside of the bark is green, changing to orange just below the surface; inner bark pinkish or straw-coloured. It is described and illustrated in many texts, including Brandis (1972), Verdcourt (1979), Nielsen (1985), ICFRE (1995), Doran and Turnbull (1997) and Valkenburg (1997). The compound leaves have 2-5 (-8) pairs of sub-opposite pinnae, with a petiole 5.5-12 cm long with a large, brown, oblong gland near the base; gland narrowly elliptical, 4-10 mm long, flat and disc-like or concave with raised margins. The pinnae are 12-20 cm long, with elliptical glands below the junction of the 1-3 distal pairs of petiolules, 1 mm in diameter. Leaflets are in 5-12 pairs on each pinna, opposite, asymmetrically ovate to sub-rhomboid, 2-4.5 (-6) cm x 1-2.2 (-3.3) cm, base asymmetrical, often emarginate, apex rounded or sub-truncate, both surfaces sparsely puberulous or finely pubescent, rarely glabrous above (Valkenburg, 1997). The inflorescence is a large terminal panicle, to 30 cm long, with sessile, white or greenish-white, sessile flowers in small 15-30 flowered heads, 13 mm in diameter on stalks 8-30 mm long; the corolla funnel-shaped, 6-6.5 mm long, with elliptical lobes. The fruit is a flat, papery pod, dark red-brown, linear-oblong, 10-25 cm long by 2-3 cm broad with distinctive long points at both ends and distinctive marks over each seed. It contains 6-12 brown, ellipsoid seeds, 7.5-8 mm x 4.5-6.5 mm and 1.5 mm thick that are arranged more or less transversely in the pod (Valkenburg, 1997). At maturity the pod splits open to release the seeds which are smooth, greenish brown with a leathery testa.

Plant Type

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Broadleaved
Perennial
Seed propagated
Tree
Vegetatively propagated
Woody

Distribution

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Albizia procera occurs naturally in India (Gupta, 1993; ICFRE, 1995) through South-East Asia to the Philippines, Indonesia, Melanesia and northern Australia. It extends north into China, including Hainan and Taiwan (van Valkenburg, 1997). Isolated populations occur in the Malay Peninsula, southern Kalimantan and Sumatra (Indonesia) and Papua New Guinea (Nielsen, 1985; van Valkenburg, 1997). In Australia, A. procera is most common in coastal areas of northeastern Queensland. There are also disjunct occurrences in the Kimberley region in northern Western Australia (Doran and Turnbull, 1997). It has been introduced into Africa, the Caribbean, Panama, Brazil and Fiji (Orwa et al., 2009; ILDIS, 2016; USDA-ARS, 2016).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Last updated: 17 Dec 2021
Continent/Country/Region Distribution Last Reported Origin First Reported Invasive Planted Reference Notes

Africa

EgyptPresentIntroduced
KenyaPresentIntroducedPlanted
MauritiusPresentIntroduced
-RodriguesPresentIntroduced
NigeriaPresentIntroducedPlanted
São Tomé and PríncipePresentIntroduced
South AfricaPresentIntroducedInvasive
SudanPresentIntroduced
TanzaniaPresentIntroduced
UgandaPresentIntroduced
ZimbabwePresentIntroducedInvasive

Asia

BangladeshPresentNative
BruneiPresentNative
CambodiaPresentNative
ChinaPresentNative
-GuangdongPresentNative
-GuangxiPresentNative
-HainanPresentNative
-YunnanPresentNative
IndiaPresentNative
-Andaman and Nicobar IslandsPresentNative
-Andhra PradeshPresentNative
-Arunachal PradeshPresentNative
-AssamPresentNative
-BiharPresentNative
-GoaPresentNative
-GujaratPresentNative
-HaryanaPresentNativePlanted
-KarnatakaPresentNative
-KeralaPresentNative
-Madhya PradeshPresentNative
-MaharashtraPresentNative
-ManipurPresentNative
-MeghalayaPresentNative
-MizoramPresentNative
-NagalandPresentNative
-OdishaPresentNativePlanted
-PunjabPresentNative
-RajasthanPresentNative
-Tamil NaduPresentNative
-TripuraPresentNativePlanted
-Uttar PradeshPresentNative
-West BengalPresentNative
IndonesiaPresentNative
-Irian JayaPresentNative
-JavaPresentNative
-Lesser Sunda IslandsPresentNative
-Maluku IslandsPresentNative
-SulawesiPresentNative
-SumatraPresentNative
LaosPresentNative
MalaysiaPresentNative
-Peninsular MalaysiaPresentIntroduced
MyanmarPresentNative
NepalPresentNative
PakistanPresentNative
PhilippinesPresentNative
Sri LankaPresentNative
TaiwanPresentNative
ThailandPresentNative
VietnamPresentNative

North America

Antigua and BarbudaPresentIntroduced
BahamasPresentIntroduced
BarbadosPresentIntroduced
CubaPresentIntroducedInvasive
DominicaPresentIntroduced
Dominican RepublicPresentIntroducedInvasive
GrenadaPresentIntroduced
GuadeloupePresentIntroduced
HaitiPresentIntroduced
JamaicaPresentIntroduced
MartiniquePresentIntroduced
Netherlands AntillesPresentIntroduced
PanamaPresentIntroduced
Puerto RicoPresentIntroduced1924Invasive
Saint Kitts and NevisPresentIntroduced
Saint LuciaPresentIntroduced
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentIntroduced
Trinidad and TobagoPresentIntroducedInvasive
U.S. Virgin IslandsPresentIntroducedInvasive
United StatesPresentIntroduced
-FloridaPresentIntroduced
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced2017

Oceania

AustraliaPresentNative
-QueenslandPresentNative
-Western AustraliaPresentNative
FijiPresentIntroduced
Papua New GuineaPresentNative
Solomon IslandsPresentIntroducedPlanted

South America

BrazilPresentIntroduced
VenezuelaPresentIntroducedInvasive

History of Introduction and Spread

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Albizia procera has been introduced into a number of Caribbean and Central American countries such as Cuba, Puerto Rico and Panama, where it has become an invasive weed (Chinea-Rivera, 1995; Valkenburg, 1997). World Agroforestry Centre (2002) reports its introduction to the US Virgin Islands in the late 1800s and to Puerto Rico in 1924. In Puerto Rico during the 1940s, the introduction and plantation of this species increased because it was seen as “a promising rapid-growing fuelwood species” for the coastal and lower mountain regions (Little and Wadsworth, 1964). It has also been introduced into various African countries including Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda and Zimbabwe and in countries in the South Pacific such as Fiji and Solomon Islands. In South Africa, it was introduced in 1929 and now invading areas across the KwaZulu-Natal region (Nyoka, 2002). In Australia, in the absence of burning, it will colonize alang-alang (Imperata cylindrica) natural grassland (van Valkenburg, 1997).

Risk of Introduction

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The risk of introduction of A. procera is very high across tropical and subtropical regions of the world. This species is widely promoted to be used as a soil improver in agroforestry systems, for wood and charcoal production and as an ornamental (Orwa et al., 2009). Additionally, this species has the potential to escape from cultivation and become naturalized, especially in disturbed areas near cultivation.

Habitat

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In India, A. procera occurs in tropical semi-evergreen forests, tropical moist deciduous forests, dry tropical forests such as low alluvial savannah woodlands and northern subtropical broadleaved forests (Gupta, 1993; ICFRE, 1995). In Vietnam, it is found in tropical rainforest, dry open-forest and savannahs (Nguyen Ngoc Chinh et al., 1996). Other vegetation types reported by Valkenburg (1997) include secondary forest, monsoon forest, pyrogenic grassland and stunted, seasonal swamp forest.

In Australia, A. procera is found mainly in woodland, open-woodland and open-forest dominated by eucalypts. In Queensland, it also occurs in monsoon forest and gallery forest and at the rain forest margins (Hyland et al., 1993; Lowry and Seebeck, 1997).

In China, A. procera occurs in thin forests and thickets at elevation ranging from 100 m to 600 m (Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2016). In the Caribbean, it grows in ruderal sites in dry and moist forests (Oviedo Prieto et al., 2012; Rojas-Sandoval and Acevedo-Rodríguez, 2015; Trinidad Biodiversity, 2016).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial
Terrestrial ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ManagedManaged forests, plantations and orchards Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ManagedManaged grasslands (grazing systems) Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial ManagedDisturbed areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalNatural grasslands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalRiverbanks Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
LittoralCoastal areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

The chromosome number reported for A. procera is 2n=26 (van Valkenburg, 1997). This species has a broad geographic range and it is reasonable to expect large provenance variation in such attributes as growth, form and adaptation to different environments. This is confirmed to some degree by species trials in southeastern Queensland which included a very limited range of Australian provenances of A. procera and growth rate and survival of 2 years after planting varied substantially among provenances (Ryan and Bell, 1991). Studies testing a comprehensive range of provenances of A. procera in different environments are warranted given the economic potential of the species. Institutes in Australia, India, Singapore and Thailand are listed as suppliers of seed from native populations of this species (Kindt et al., 1997). No breeding programmes of A. procera are known to exist.

Physiology and Phenology

Albizia procera becomes almost leafless for a short time during the dry season (Valkenburg, 1997). In Australia, leaf fall in this species occurs late in the dry season (late November-early December) (Lowry and Seebeck, 1997), while in India leaf fall takes place in January-February and new leaves appear in April-May (ICFRE, 1995). In Australia, flowering occurs about March to May and the fruits mature from July to October. In India, flowering begins in June after the monsoon has started; the pods are formed soon after flowering and mature in 8 months (January-March in northern states; February-May elsewhere); elsewhere it is reported to flower and fruit throughout the year (ICFRE, 1995; Valkenburg, 1997). In China, it has been recorded flowering from May to September and fruiting from September to February of following year (Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2016). In Puerto Rico, flowering generally occurs during the rainy season, from August to October and flowering activity begins at 3 to 4 years of age, when trees reach a height of approximately 4 m (Parrotta, 2004).

Germination is epigeal and occurs from 2 to 21 days after sowing providing soil moisture is sufficient. Vigorous seedlings produce a long, stout taproot and lateral roots soon form Rhizobium nodules (Parrotta, 1988). In nurseries, seedlings may reach 20 cm to 30 cm height within 2 to 3 months. A. procera has a mean annual increment in diameter of 1-4 cm and adult trees may reach 40-60 cm of diameter at breast height in 30 years (Valkenburg, 1997).

Reproductive Biology

Flowers are bisexual and apparently pollinated by wind and insects (World Agroforestry Centre, 2002). In Puerto Rico, A. procera trees growing in the open produced 3500 pods in one year and most pods and seeds fell within the extent of the crown (Chinea-Rivera, 1995). In Australia, A. procera has about 16,600 viable seeds/kg, with an average germination rate of 63% (Doran and Turnbull, 1997), but in Indonesia and Bangladesh there are 20,000-24,000 seeds/kg (Mohiuddin, 1997; Roshetko, 1997). Depending on the location, pods can take 8 months to ripen (e.g. India) or the tree can flower and fruit throughout the year (World Agroforestry Centre, 2002). Seeds may be released from mature dehiscent pods still attached to the tree or from wind-blown pods that later dehisce or decompose (World Agroforestry Centre, 2002). Vegetative propagation of A. procera may be successfully achieved by stumps and stem or root cuttings (National Academy of Sciences, 1979; Valkenburg, 1997).

Longevity

Albizia procera is a fast-growing, long-lived perennial tree (Parrotta, 2004). Trees may live for more than 30 years (Valkenburg, 1997).


Environmental Requirements

Valkenburg (1997) gives climatic indicators for this species: mean annual rainfall of 1700 mm with a range of 500-3000 mm; annual mean maximum temperature of 32°C and annual mean minimum of 21°C. Gupta (1993) describes the species as frost tender, with -1°C the lowest temperature recorded throughout its natural range. In Australia, A. procera lies in the hot humid and sub-humid zones and rarely close to the hot semi-arid zone (Doran and Turnbull, 1997). The mean maximum temperature of the hottest month is mainly 31-34°C and the mean minimum of the coolest 11-19°C. There are 60-100 days over 32°C and from 0-4 days over 38°C. The area is frost-free. The 50-percentile rainfall is mainly 1000-1750 mm but the extremes are from 650 to 2150 mm. The most northerly localities have a strong summer monsoon rainfall pattern. Elsewhere on the central east coast of Queensland, there is a strong summer maximum. There are 60-125 rain-days a year.

According to Valkenburg (1997), A. procera grows well on shallow soils with a pH of 5.5-7.5. In India, this species prefers well-drained sandy and sandy loam soils in moist places along streams and even in swampy situations and low-lying areas, but is also capable of growing in poor soils (Gupta, 1993). In Western Australia, A. procera occurs on sandstone plateaux overlying basalt. Eastern Australian occurrences are mainly in the foothills and coastal lowlands on shallow sandy or loamy soils of low to medium fertility derived from basalts, granite or shale. Other soil types include acid and neutral yellow earths, acid red friable earths and solodized solonetz and solodics. It also grows on poor, seasonally swampy, shallow soils.

Associations

Albizia procera fixes nitrogen after nodulating with certain native strains of rhizobia (Halliday, 1984; MacDicken, 1994). In Australia, it occurs commonly in the understorey of woodland 10-20 m highly dominated by Eucalyptus intermedia [Corymbia intermedia], E. pellita, E. tereticornis, E. tessellaris [C. tessellaris], E. torelliana [C. torelliana], Acacia aulacocarpa, A. mangium and Lophostemon suaveolens. The woodlands are burnt regularly and the ground layer is dominated by the grasses Imperata cylindrica and Themeda australis [Themeda triandra] (Tracey, 1982). It is co-dominant in low open-forest with E. miniata and E. polycarpa [C. polycarpa] in northern Western Australia.

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
28 -22 0 1500

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) -1
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 21 32
Mean maximum temperature of hottest month (ºC) 31 34
Mean minimum temperature of coldest month (ºC) 11 21

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Dry season duration45number of consecutive months with <40 mm rainfall
Mean annual rainfall5003000mm; lower/upper limits

Rainfall Regime

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Bimodal
Summer

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • seasonally waterlogged

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • alkaline
  • neutral

Soil texture

  • light
  • medium

Special soil tolerances

  • infertile
  • saline
  • shallow
  • sodic

Notes on Natural Enemies

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In the nursery, seedling wilt caused by Fusarium oxysporum causes death of A. procera seedlings in India (ICFRE, 1995). Colletotrichum dematium or leaf spot disease causes damage to older leaves of seedlings and tender shoots and promotes early defoliation and is most severe under conditions of high humidity (ICFRE, 1995). Ravenelia clemensiae causes pustules to form on leaflets of seedlings and can kill plants and it is controlled chemically (ICFRE, 1995). In plantations in India, bark and stem cankers are caused by the pit canker disease Fusarium solani [Haematonectria haematococca] in 15-20 year-old trees of A. procera (ICFRE, 1995). In India, a serious outbreak of the leaf spot fungus, Cercospora, was reported on A. procera leaves by Nath et al. (1989). Root rot caused by Ganoderma lucidum and heart rot caused by Ganoderma applanatum and Polyporus gilvus are reported to be minor diseases of A. procera in India.

Bruchids or seed weevils, including the species Bruchidius bilineatopygus, cause very considerable damage to seed of A. procera in India (Abraham et al., 1995; ICFRE, 1995). Root knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.) were identified causing galling and poor growth of A. procera in forest nurseries around Dehra Dun, India (Sharma and Mehrotra, 1992). The hemipterous insect Oxyrhachis tarandus causes considerable damage (Troup, 1921). In Indonesia, the tops of young trees may be damaged by Rhynchites beetles (Kalshoven, 1934). Stem borer attacks are reported from Zimbabwe and in India and Malaysia, trees of A. procera have been sometimes defoliated by larvae of Lepidoptera species such as Ascotis selenaria, Eurema blanda, E. hecabe, Cusiala raptaria, Hyposidra successaria [Hyposidra talaca], Rhesala imparata, R. inconcinnalis, R. moestalis and Semiothisa emersaria (ICFRE, 1995; Valkenburg, 1997). The termite Coptotermes curvignathus is reported as a pest in India and in Africa the termite Ancistrotermes amphidon is a serious pest of young trees (World Agroforestry Centre, 2002).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Albizia procera spreads by seeds and vegetatively by root suckers (Parrotta, 2004). Seeds may be released from mature dehiscent pods still attached to the tree or from wind-blown pods that later dehisce or decompose (World Agroforestry Centre, 2002). Seeds are also dispersed by animals as pods are often eaten by cattle and other animals.

Intentional introduction

Albizia procera has been actively introduced by humans into agroforestry and silvopasture systems (Valkenburg, 1997Nyoka, 2002; Parrotta, 2004). It is widely cultivated for use as a soil improver and protein source in agroforestry systems and as an ornamental and shade tree in plantations (Orwa et al., 2009). Intentional introduction is, therefore, the primary routes of spread.

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Animal productionThe protein-rich fodder of A. procera is eaten by cattle, buffaloes, goats, camels and elephants Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
DisturbanceCommon along roadsides and disturbed sites Yes Chinea (1992)
Escape from confinement or garden escapeFound naturalized in areas near cultivation Yes Parrotta (2004)
ForageLeaves are used as forage and fodder Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
ForestryWidely promoted as a key species in agroforestry systems Yes Yes Valkenburg (1997)
Habitat restoration and improvementOften planted as soil improver Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
Hedges and windbreaksPlanted as windbreak and shade tree in plantations Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
Medicinal useUsed in traditional medicine Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
Ornamental purposesPlanted as ornamental in parks and gardens and as shade tree Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
Timber tradeThe wood is used for agricultural implements, moulding, furniture, veneer and cabinet work Yes Yes Valkenburg (1997)

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Debris and waste associated with human activitiesWidely cultivated in agroforestry systems Yes Valkenburg (1997)
LivestockSeeds are eaten by livestock Yes Yes Orwa et al. (2009)
WindSeeds are dispersed by wind Yes Yes Parrotta (2004)

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Animal/plant collections None
Animal/plant products None
Biodiversity (generally) Negative
Crop production None
Environment (generally) None
Fisheries / aquaculture None
Forestry production None
Human health None
Livestock production None
Native fauna None
Native flora Negative
Rare/protected species None
Tourism None
Trade/international relations None
Transport/travel None

Environmental Impact

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Impact on habitats

Albizia procera grows forming dense stands that inhibit the germination and establishment of seedling of other species including native plants. Henderson (2001) classifies A. procera as a transformer species, i.e. as a monospecies it can dominate or replace the canopy or subcanopy layer of a natural or semi-natural ecosystem altering its structure, integrity or functioning.

Albizia procera is a N-fixing species with the potential to change soil nitrogen levels with negative impacts on nutrient balances and cycling in invaded areas (Chinea, 1992; Parrotta, 2004). Consequently, it is considered as a habitat transformer species (Oviedo et al., 2012).

Impact on biodiversity

Albizia procera grows forming dense thickets that outcompete native plant species, with a consequent reduction in native species diversity. Across the Caribbean Islands, A. procera grows faster than many native species (World Agroforestry Centre, 2002) displacing and outcompeting native plant species. It is also an invasive species impacting the flora of Caribbean dry forests, one of the most threatened ecosystems in the world (Murphy and Lugo, 1986). In Puerto Rico, A. procera covers more than 1000 hectares in moist plains and foothills, the rate of spread has been rapid and it is regarded as already common or abundant, widespread and competing in primary or secondary forest stands (Francis and Liogier, 1991).

Social Impact

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Henderson (2001) classifies all plant parts as poisonous, however, the tree is widely used as a fodder tree in agroforestry systems with the pods used in animal feed.

Risk and Impact Factors

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Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Abundant in its native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
  • Is a habitat generalist
  • Tolerates, or benefits from, cultivation, browsing pressure, mutilation, fire etc
  • Pioneering in disturbed areas
  • Highly mobile locally
  • Benefits from human association (i.e. it is a human commensal)
  • Long lived
  • Fast growing
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • Gregarious
  • Has propagules that can remain viable for more than one year
  • Reproduces asexually
Impact outcomes
  • Altered trophic level
  • Damaged ecosystem services
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Modification of nutrient regime
  • Modification of successional patterns
  • Monoculture formation
  • Negatively impacts agriculture
  • Negatively impacts animal health
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition - smothering
  • Poisoning
  • Rapid growth
  • Rooting
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Difficult/costly to control

Uses

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Albizia procera is a useful tree for farm and amenity planting, light shade, firebreaks and for the rehabilitation of seasonally dry, eroded and degraded soils (Doran and Turnbull, 1997). In Cuba, it is used as a shade tree over coffee (Cumba et al., 1992) and in Himachal Pradesh, India, it has been tested successfully as an agroforestry species in an alley cropping system with rain-fed wheat (Triticum aestivum) (Chauhan et al., 1995). In the Philippines, farmers conserve trees of A. procera in the landscape because they cast only a light shade, fix nitrogen and serve as a cash reserve as the trees are in demand by local carvers (Valkenburg, 1997). In Bangladesh, A. procera is regarded as a soil improver and is used as a nurse tree in tea gardens, coffee and cocoa (Theobroma cacao) plantings (Mohiuddin, 1997).

Albizia procera has a large amount of non-durable, yellowish-white sapwood. The heartwood is hard and heavy, light or dark brown, with light and dark bands resembling walnut. It is straight-grained, splits readily, seasons well, works easily and is durable (Brandis, 1972). The timber is strong, elastic, tough and hard (ICFRE, 1995). A. procera makes a good cabinet and furniture timber and is also suitable for general construction, agricultural implements, household products, poles, house posts, truck and bus bodies and packing cases. It is a suitable source material for paper pulp, giving satisfactory yields of bleached pulp (ICFRE, 1995). The fibres of A. procera are short and blending with a long-fibred pulp may be necessary to improve strength properties for some end uses (ICFRE, 1995). A. procera makes excellent charcoal and fuelwood (Campbell, 1980; ICFRE, 1995). The high rate of biomass production (124 t/ha oven-dry at 5.5 years), high proportion of biomass in stem and branches (91%) and observed vigorous coppicing after felling led Lugo et al. (1990) to recommend the species for fuelwood production in Puerto Rico.

In India, the leaves of A. procera are considered good fodder for most ruminants (cattle, sheep, goats, elephants and deer) and the tree is lopped for fodder in several states (ICFRE, 1995). In Australia, it appears that early settlers regarded A. procera as a good fodder tree (Lowry and Seebeck, 1997). According to Lowry and Seebeck (1997), the main natural feed source from A. procera when established at wide spacings in a silvopastoral system would be the fallen leaves during the period of low quality dry-season pasture. These leaves could be expected to have similar feed value to the leaves of Albizia lebbeck, but would be available much later in the dry season. According to Valkenburg (1997), mineral content of the leaves for N, K, Ca and Mg is adequate for animal production, but the Na and P contents are inadequate, suggesting that this species should not be used alone for fodder but in mixtures with other fodder species. The leaf has a high crude fibre and lignin content, indicating poor digestibility (Valkenburg, 1997). In a study in West Africa, Larbi et al. (1996) found that A. procera was inferior in feed value to A. lebbeck and A. saman [Samanea saman].

The bark is a source of tannin, but yields are low (Japing, 1936; Valkenburg, 1997). The pounded bark is used as a fish poison and the leaves are used as an insecticide in Nepal (Valkenburg, 1997).

Uses List

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Animal feed, fodder, forage

  • Fodder/animal feed

Environmental

  • Agroforestry
  • Amenity
  • Boundary, barrier or support
  • Erosion control or dune stabilization
  • Soil improvement
  • Windbreak

Fuels

  • Charcoal
  • Fuelwood

General

  • Botanical garden/zoo

Materials

  • Carved material
  • Dye/tanning
  • Fibre
  • Miscellaneous materials
  • Pesticide
  • Poisonous to fish
  • Resins
  • Wood/timber

Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Traditional/folklore

Ornamental

  • Seed trade

Wood Products

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Charcoal

Containers

  • Boxes
  • Cases
  • Cooperage
  • Crates
  • Pallets
  • Tanks
  • Vats

Furniture

Pulp

  • Short-fibre pulp

Roundwood

  • Building poles
  • Pit props
  • Posts
  • Transmission poles

Sawn or hewn building timbers

  • For heavy construction
  • For light construction

Vehicle bodies

Veneers

Woodware

  • Cutlery
  • Industrial and domestic woodware
  • Tool handles
  • Wood carvings

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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Related species are A. canescens and A. lebbeck. A. procera is clearly distinguished from A. lebbeck by the smooth pale green or buff bark, larger leaves, more diffuse canopy, much smaller flowers and smaller, flatter red pods (Lowry and Seebeck, 1997).

Prevention and Control

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Due to the variable regulations around (de)registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control. Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label.

Although no specific information is available on the control of A. procera, herbicides such as imazapyr, triclopyr and glyphosate have been used to control areas invaded by other Albizia species (USDA-NRCS, 2016).

References

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Distribution References

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12/10/16 Updated by

Julissa Rojas-Sandoval, Department of Botany-Smithsonian NMNH, Washington DC, USA

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