Acacia nilotica

Image of Acacia nilotica

Scientific classification:

Kingdom: Plantae
 Division: Magnoliophyta
  Class: Magnoliopsida
   Order: Fabales
    Family: Fabaceae
     Subfamily: Mimosoideae
      Genus: Acacia
       Species: Acacia nilotica (Linn.). Bel.

Common Name: Babla, Kata banla, Kikar(Beng.); Indian gum-arabic tree, Babul tree(Eng.).
Edible Parts: Bark or gum, Leaves, Resin, Root, Seed pods and Root

Acacia nilotica is a tree 5-20 m high with a dense spheric crown, stems and branches usually dark to black coloured, fissured bark, grey-pinkish slash, exuding a reddish low quality gum. The tree has thin, straight, light, grey spines in axillary pairs, usually in 3 to 12 pairs, 5 to 7.5 cm long in young trees, mature trees commonly without thorns. In West Africa, the bark or gum is used to treat cancers and/or tumors (of ear, eye, or testicles) and indurations of liver and spleen, condylomas, and excess flesh. Sap or bark, leaves, and young pods are strongly astringent due to tannin, and are chewed in Senegal as an antiscorbutic.