Warburgia ugandensis Health effects and herbal facts
Warburgia ugandensis, also known as Uganda greenheart, is a species of evergreen tree native to Africa. The wood is resistant to insect attack and very strong. It was commonly used for the yoke pole of ox-wagons, the Disselboom. Early Indian immigrants to Kenya, working on the construction of the railway, used the leaves to flavor their curries before the chilli plant was commonly introduced. The flavor is fiercely hot and subtly different from chillies. Extracts of W. ugandensis have been reported to show some antimalarial, antifungal, and antibacterial properties in vitro or in animal models. Unsustainable overharvesting of the bark reduced the population of the longifolia subspecies to the Rondo Forest Reserve in Tanzania, which prompted the IUCN to list it as vulnerable in its Red List of Threatened Species.
Economic importance of Warburgia ugandensis
- Northeast Tropical Africa: Ethiopia
- East Tropical Africa: Kenya; Tanzania; Uganda
- West-Central Tropical Africa: Zaire
- South Tropical Africa: Malawi