Avicennia spp.

 

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Family: Avicenniaceae (Verbenaceae)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Black Mangrove

 

 

 

The genus Avicennia contains about 15 species which grow along tropical and subtropical shores. It is commonly included with the family Verbenaceae. The genus Avicennia was dedicated in honor of Abu Sina, Latinized as Avicennia (980—1036 AD), of Bokhara, Arab physician and philosopher.

Avicennia alba-baen

Avicennia germinans-black mangrove, black-tree, blackwood, honey mangrove,
mangle blanco, saltbush

Avicennia marina-blackwood, mangle nero, mangle prieto, manglecito, parwa

 

Distribution

This genus grows in pure, dense stands on mud flats along the coast and estuaries, in brackish coastal swamps, and on river banks along lower brackish parts.

The Tree

The tree sometimes reaches a height of 75 ft (23 m), although normally only 25 ft (8 m), with a 2-ft (0.6-m) diameter. Towards the northern end of its limit (Dog Island, Florida) it is shrubby. Black mangroves have long heavy roots which grow extensions (pneumatophores) that aid in gas exchange and coincidentally trap silt to extend the shoreline. Seeds mature and germinate on the tree and then fall to the mud.

The Wood

General

The sapwood of mangrove is wide, yellow—gray to brown—yellow. The heartwood is dark yellow—brown to very dark brown with an oily appearance. The luster is low and the wood has no distinct odor or taste. The grain is irregular and interlocked, and the texture is coarse and uneven. The wood may contain a yellow powdery substance called lapachol. The bole is 20 to 40 ft (6 to 12 m) long and unbutressed, but it is swollen due to numerous pneumatophores (aerial roots). The woods of all species are practically identical, with concentric, anastomosing layers of secondary phloem (bast).

 

 

Mechanical Properties (2-inch standard)

 

 

 

 

Compression

 

 

 

 

Specific

gravity

MOE

x106 lbf/in2

MOR

lbf/in2

Parallel

lbf/in2

Perpendicular

lbf/in2

WMLa

in-lbf/in3

Hardness

lbf

Shear

lbf/in2

Green

0.83

1.55

11,100

4,940

1,870

12.3

1,700

1,370

Dry

0.83

2.09

16,400

8,340

2,360

17.9

aWML = Work to maximum load.

Reference (59).

 

 

Drying and Shrinkage

Type of shrinkage

Percentage of shrinkage
(green to final moisture content)

0% MC

6% MC

20% MC

Tangential

9.7

Radial

6.2

Volumetric

15.6

aThe wood air-dries well; kiln drying requires a slow
schedule to prevent warping.
bReference (59).

Kiln Drying Schedule: No information available at this time.

Working Properties: The wood saws well, but it is not easy to work with because of the interlocked grain. It glues well, but nail holes must be prebored to prevent splitting.

Durability: Very susceptible to termite and marine borer attack. Resistance to impregnation variable.

Preservation: No information available at this time.

Uses: Used in the round (poles and posts for netting), underground foundations (pilings), pulp (soda process), fuel, charcoal, tannin from bark.

Toxicity: No information available at this time.

Additional Reading and References Cited (in parentheses) 4, 14, 29, 45, 55, 68, 74, 80, 101.

4.Berni, C.A.; Bolza, E.; Christensen, F.J. 1979. South American timbers. The characteristics, properties and uses of 190 species. Melbourne, Australia: Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, Division of Building Research.

14.Cellai, G.C. 1967. Atlante micrografico dei legni dell’Africa orientale. 60. Avicennia marina (Forsk.). Firenze, Italy: Vierhapper, Verbenaceae. Grafica Toscana.

29. Elias, T.S. 1980. The complete trees of North America, field guide and natural history. New York: van Nostrand Reinhold Company.

45.Japing, H.W. 1957. Tests about the most important mechanical and physical properties of 41 Surinam wood species. Mededeling 122. Afdeling Tropische Producten 46. Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Royal Tropical Institute.

55. Little, Jr., E.L. 1979. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Agric. Handb. 541. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. U.S. Government Printing Office.

68. Panshin, A.J.; de Zeeuw, C. 1980. Textbook of wood technology, 4th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co.

74. Record, S.J.; Hess R.W. 1943. Timbers of the new world. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

80. Sattar, M.A.; Bhattacharjee, D.K.. 1987. Physical and mechanical properties of Sundri (Heritiera fomes) and Baen (Avicennia alba). Bull. 10. Chittagong, Bangladesh: Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, Forest Research Institute, Timber Physics Series.

101. Vink, A.T. 1965. Surinam timbers. 3d ed. Paramaribo, Surinam: Surinam Forest
Service.