Herbs & Plants

Erythrophloeum guineense

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Botanical Name : Erythrophloeum guineense
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Erythrophleum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Synonyms: Nkasa. Mancona Bark. Doom Bark. Ordeal Bark. Casca Bark. Saucy Bark. Red Water Bark. Cortex erythrophlei.

Common Name :Sassy Bark

Habitat:Erythrophloeum guineense is native to Upper Guinea and Senegambia.

The tree is large and spreading, and the bark very hard, breaking with a short, granular fracture. It varies in size and thickness according to the age of the stem or branch.(The bark is usually hard, curved or flat of about 8 to 10 cm long and 4 to 7 cm wide. ) It may be flat or curved, dull grey, red-brown, or almost black, with reddish warts or circular spots merging into bands running longitudinally. It is inodorous, with an astringent, acrid taste.


In West Africa the drug is used as an ordeal poison in trials for witchcraft and sorcery.

Possibly other species yield the Sassy Bark of commerce, differences being noticed in its properties at different periods.

Cultivation: Sassy bark is extensively cultivated in west coast Africa, guinea and senegambia.

Meditional Uses:

Part Used: Bark of the tree and branches.

Constituents: Sassy Bark yields its proper ties to water. It contains toxic alkaloids erythrophloeine, resin, and tannin, small quantity of fatty acid, ipuranol and luteolin.

The bark is said to possess actions of astringent, analgesic and anodyne. The toxic compound found in sassy Erythrophloeine is considered useful in heart diseases. Hydrochloride found in sassy bark is useful for anesthetic properties and used in dental surgeries. There has been much controversy concerning its anaesthetic powers. It has not yet been obtained in crystalline form, and needs fuller investigation.

Known Hazards:Sassy Bark has been used for medicinal purpose by the natives of Africa as it possesses many properties but it is poisonous.

The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.