Wild Tamarind, Lead Tree. Arborescent deciduous small... more
Leucaena leucocephala - seeds
Wild Tamarind, Lead Tree. Arborescent deciduous small tree or shrub, flowers numerous, axillary on long stalks, white, in dense global heads 1" across. It is used as a shade plant in coffee, rubber, cacao, and cinchona plantations, for reforestation, windbreaks and firebreaks. Necklaces are made with the seeds. Leadtree is valued as an excellent protein source for cattle fodder, consumed browsed or harvested, mature or immature, green or dry. The nutritive value is equal to or superior to alfalfa. Adapts well to a wide range of tropical and subtropical environments, especially seasonally dry tropical areas. Some seedlings less than one-year old will produce viable seed. Seeds remain viable from several months to several years. The hard waxy seedcoat makes scarification necessary before planting. The easiest and most common method is to scald seed in boiling or near boiling water. Boiling water is poured directly over the seed and allowed to cool to room temperature (preferably overnight), followed by sowing. Alternatively, small numbers of seed may be scarified by nicking which involves the use of a knife or secateur to clip off a small portion of the seed coat at the end opposite the pod attachment scar (hilum).