Commiphora rostrata1 Engl.
Jino, Jenau, Janau (Somali), Dirraa, Dainjo (Borena)
is a strong-smelling shrub to 3.5m. Stems exude a copious, clear, sap. Lateral
shoots end in strong spines. The bark is smooth, dark purple or maroon to almost
black. The flowers are dioecious, narrow-stalked, deep red. Fruits are red,
pointed, with wiry stalks. The plant is usually leafless at time of flowering.
preparation methods and palatability
leaves and young shoots are edible. Leaves and young shoots are eaten raw
directly from the tree. When chewed they taste salty and of oxalic-acid and
bitter. The leaves are sometimes also used as a relish or cooked together with
other foodstuff to add flavour. Bark and branches can be used to prepare tea and
the stem pith is sometimes chewed to quench thirst. The bark from young plants
can also be chewed. It is used by pastoralists when available and especially in
times of food shortage at the end of the dry season and the beginning of the gu
rains (long rains). The leaves can also be chewed to ease coughs and chest
grows in Eastern Ethiopia, Somalia and north and south-eastern Kenya in dry open
Acacia-Commiphora-Boswellia bushland, 80 - 1,050m. The species is common
on sandy, gravelly soils or on rocky areas with rainfall 200 - 600mm.
vegetatively by stem cuttings.
Gode Zone Somali Region.
Commiphora species two varieties are known: rostrata, which is an
erect shrub and the more common and widespread variety, and reflexa (Chiov.)
Gillet with a spreading prostrate habit found in north-east Kenya, south-east
Ethiopia and in Somalia.
Photo! but drawings in Maundu et al., 1999: p. 99
of the following description have been taken from Maundu et al., 1999: p. 99