Botanical Name: Dalbergia greveana
Species: D. greveana
*Dalbergia ambongoensis Baill.
*Dalbergia eurybothrya Drake
*Dalbergia ikopensis Jum.
*Dalbergia isaloensis R.Vig.
*Dalbergia myriabotrys Baker
*Dalbergia perrieri Jum
Common Names: Madagascar Rosewood
*French rosewood, Madagascar rosewood (En).
*Palissandre violet, palissandre de Madagascar (Fr).
Habitat:Dalbergia greveana is native to Africa – western Madagascar. It is usually found in deciduous, seasonally dry forest and woodland, it is sometimes found as a shrub in grassland, at elevations up to 800 metres. It can be found on various soils, from sandy to limestone-derived and ferrallitic.
Dalbergia greveana is a deciduous small to medium-sized tree up to 15(–20) m tall; bole often short and crooked, up to 50 cm in diameter; bark whitish to blackish grey, smooth to rough; young branches glabrous. The leaves are arranged spirally, imparipinnately compound with 7–9(–11) leaflets; stipules small, caducous; petiole and rachis slightly hairy to glabrous; petiolules 3–8 mm long; leaflets alternate, ovate to elliptical or almost circular, (2–)2.5–6 cm × (0.5–)1.5–3 cm, thinly leathery, minutely hairy to glabrous below. Inflorescence a terminal or axillary panicle 5–15 (–20) cm long, with slightly coiled final divisions, hairy; bracts persistent. It’s flowers are bisexual, papilionaceous, 3–4.5 mm long; pedicel c. 0.5(–1.5) mm long; calyx campanulate, 2–3 mm long, lobes shorter than tube, lower lobe slightly longer, upper lobes fused; corolla whitish becoming cream-coloured, with broadly obovate to violin-shaped standard and clawed wings and keel; stamens 10, fused into a tube, but free in upper part; ovary superior, with distinct stipe at base, style short. The fruit is a flat, elliptical to rhombic pod 3–6.5 cm × 1–2.5 cm, with short stipe 4–5 mm long, yellowish brown, indehiscent, usually 1-seeded. And the seeds are kidney-shaped, c. 8 mm × 4 mm, and color is reddish brown.
Pieces of branches are rubbed on stones with water to produce a paste which is applied to the face as a medicine against various ailments. Dichloromethane and methanolic extracts of Dalbergia greveana bark showed activity against gram-positive bacteria.
The wood is one of the so-called rosewoods (‘Madagascar rosewood’, ‘palisander’), which are much in demand for cabinet making, furniture, marquetry and parquet flooring. It is one of the favoured woods for musical instruments, not only because of its beautiful colour and venation, but also because of its clearness of tone. It is also suitable for interior trim, joinery, ship and boat building, vehicle bodies, poles and piles, precision equipment, carvings, toys and novelties, sporting goods, handles, ladders, turnery, pattern making, veneer and plywood. The wood is used locally in Madagascar, e.g. for construction and paddles and as firewood. The Mikea people of south-western Madagascar rub pieces of branches on stones with water to produce a paste which is applied to the face as a medicine against various ailments; Dalbergia greveana is a sacred tree for these people.
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