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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Rosids
Cladus: Eurosids I
Ordo: Fabales

Familia: Fabaceae
Subfamilia: Faboideae
Tribus: Sophoreae
Genus: Xanthocercis
Species: X. madagascariensis – X. rabiensis – X. zambesiaca
Source(s) of checklist:

Xanthocercis Baill.

Pseudocadia Harms, Engl. Jahrb. 33: 162 (1902)

Native distribution areas:

Continental: Africa
Regional: Tropical Africa
Botswana, Gabon, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Northern Provinces, Zambia, Zimbabwe

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition

Primary references

Baillon, H.E., 1870. Adansonia 9: 293

Additional references

Povydysh, M.n., Goncharov, M.Yu & Yakovlev, G.P. (2010). Taxonomic revision and phylogeny of the tribe Angylocalyceae (Fabaceae) Botanicheskii Zhurnal. Moscow & Leningrad 95: 1135-1161.


Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Xanthocercis in Kew Science Plants of the World online. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Jun 04. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2021. Xanthocercis. Published online. Accessed: Jun 04 2021. 2021. Xanthocercis. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Jun 04.
Hassler, M. 2021. Xanthocercis. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. 2021. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Jun 04. Reference page.
Hassler, M. 2021. World Plants. Synonymic Checklist and Distribution of the World Flora. . Xanthocercis. Accessed: 04 Jun 2021.

Vernacular names
Afrikaans: Njalaboom, Hoenderspoor
English: Nyala tree, Nyala berry

Xanthocercis is a tree genus in the family Fabaceae. Species include:[1][2]

Xanthocercis madagascariensis Baill. - Madagascar.[3] Xanthocercis madagascariensis is a deciduous tree; it can grow up to 30 metres tall.[4] The wood is highly valued, being harvested from the wild for local use and for export. The tree also provides an edible fruit that is used locally.
Xanthocercis rabiensis Maesen.[5] Xanthocercis rabiensis is a large, evergreen tree; it can grow up to 40 metres tall. The straight, cylindrical bole can be up to 300cm in diameter.
Xanthocercis zambesiaca (Baker) Dumaz-le-Grand (Mashatu tree) - Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe.[6] This is a large impressive, evergreen tree with an exceptional dense, rounded to wide-spreading crown of glossy, drooping, dark green leaves and sprays of small rose-scented, creamy white flowers.[7] It usually reaches 30m in height.[7] It is ideal for large gardens.

Members of this genus accumulate hydroxypipecolic acids and iminosugars in their leaves.[8]

"ILDIS LegumeWeb entry for Xanthocercis". International Legume Database & Information Service. Cardiff School of Computer Science & Informatics. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
USDA; ARS; National Genetic Resources Program. "GRIN species records of Xanthocercis". Germplasm Resources Information Network—(GRIN) [Online Database]. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
"Xanthocercis madagascariensis". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 21 January 2018.
"Xanthocercis madagascariensis - Useful Tropical Plants". Retrieved 2021-07-09. Xanthocercis[permanent dead link]
"Xanthocercis zambesiaca". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 21 January 2018.
"Xanthocercis zambesiaca | PlantZAfrica". Retrieved 2021-07-09.
Kite GC, Cardoso D, Lewis GP, Zartman CE, de Queiroz LP, Veitch NC (2015). "Monomethyl ethers of 4,5-dihydroxypipecolic acid from Petaladenium urceoliferum: Enigmatic chemistry of an enigmatic legume". Phytochemistry. 116: 198–202. doi:10.1016/j.phytochem.2015.02.026. PMID 25817832.

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