Scientific nameTerminalia superba
SynonymsTerminalia, African Limba, Frake, Ofram
Native distributionWest, Central and East Africa
BiologyIt is a deciduous, fast growing, large tree, about 60m in height. The trunk is cylindrical and has a domed or flat crown. Trunk diameter can be up to 150cm. The leaves are 10 cm long and 5 cm broad, and are deciduous in the dry season.
EcologyFast-growing species
HabitatA characteristic canopy tree of tropical high secondary forest areas with a dry season of about 4 months.
WoodThe wood is light to medium weight, soft to moderately hard, not durable, and susceptible to attacks by borers and termites. It is used for many purposes such as house construction, interior joinery, furniture, veneer and plywood, musical instruments, turnery, and many others. It is also ideal for fuel and charcoal.
NTFPsThe bark is used in traditional medicine as treatment for wounds, sores, hemorrhoids, diarrhea, dysentery, malaria, ovarian problems, bronchitis, vomiting and swellings.
ServicesAgroforestry Uses: The tree is classified as a pioneer species and usually regenerates well after forest exploitation. Seedlings are often abundant along roadsides and in medium-sized forest gaps. Seedlings are tolerant of full exposure to the sun and so can be used in the initial stages of reforestation projects.
Other informationThe most well known example of its use in guitars is when Gibson produced their now highly sought-after Flying V and Explorer guitars in 1958.