Hastee (Gamo), Bolahanica (Gamo),
Kutata (Konsogna),Astie=Mulahua (Wolayetgna), Kus (Hamer-Bena)
Thorny little tree with small leaves,
5 - 7 m height. The bark is brown-black. Twigs bear small scales, spines,
1cm, thin and strait. Leaves alternate, simple or tufts, oblong, up to
7 x 3cm, blue-gray-green, folding upwards along midrip, tip round or notched.
Flowers are very fragrant, small green-white (white hairs in throat in
small, branched clusters. Fruits are oval to 2.5cm, thin skin red, yellow
to orange pulp, around one large seed containing oil.
preparation methods and palatability
Fruits are eaten fresh/raw. Remove
the skin and eat/chew the flesh and kernels altogether. Farmers report
that the fruits bulge, inflate the belly. Children normally consume the
fruit, but for adults it is regarded as a typical famine food, consumed
only in food shortage periods. Only the flesh of the fruit tastes sweetish
and attractive (something between cherry and dates?). When the flesh and
the kernel are eaten together the taste is becoming bitter and the tongue
will become temporarily numb.
Occurs in almost all regions in dry,
moist and wet low- and midlands (500 - 2,100m). Rarely it may be found
in places up to 2,450m. The tree grows in bushland, especially on riverbanks.
Seedlings and wildlings.
Konso, Gamo Gofa, Humbo, Kinda-Koyisha.
The species is multipurpose and useful
for arid and semi-arid areas as it is drought resistant. The wood is heavy,
hard and very durable. The seed contains a non-drying oil suitable for
soap and lubrication. It has also been used as body and hair oil and for
softening leather. Furthermore the species' roots, bark and leaves are
used for medicinal purposes.
1 Parts of the following
description have been taken from Bekele-Tesemma et al., 1993: p. 450/451