For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Wild Frangipani (VoacangaThouarsii)

Family Apocynaceae
This is found throughout tropical Africa. Small tree up to 15–20m tall with the two fruits joined together.
In France and Germany tabersonine is extracted from the seed, which is converted into vincamine, a compound widely used in Europe as a depressant of the central nervous system and for the treatment of cerebral vascular disorders in geriatric patients. Seeds are also exported to be used in medicines to treat heart diseases, to lower blood pressure and to treat cancer.
The uses of Voacanga thouarsii are similar to those of Voacanga africana Stapf. The latex or decoctions or infusions of the stem bark, leaves and roots are applied to wounds, boils and sores, and are used to treat gonorrhoea, eczema, fungal infections and scabies. The infusions are also taken to treat heart problems, hypertension and rheumatic afflictions. The latex is put in carious teeth as a temporary filling. In Tanzania the bark, roots and seeds are used as medicine for stomach-ache, snakebites and high blood pressure.

The wood is used in Liberia for hut posts and in Uganda for tool handles and sheaths for knives. The wood is also used as firewood and for making charcoal. The latex was formerly used to adulterate Hevea rubber. It is used as birdlime, e.g. in rice fields in Madagascar and as a glue for fastening handles to knife blades and to repair baskets. The wood is burnt in Sudan and Ghana to produce a salt. The bark yields a fibre, which is used for making hunting nets in East Africa. Voacanga thouarsii is planted along watercourses for soil and water conservation.