The confused acacia is a very interesting plant. This is due to its chemical compounds that, if used properly, can be beneficial for health. However, it is a plant that is also potentially toxic.
This is due, as already said, to the use that is given to it. However, later we will see a little more about its qualities and uses. The confused acacia belongs to the fabaceae family, which in turn is divided into several subgenera; in this case, to the mimosoideae family, therefore belonging to the acacieae tribe.
This means that the confused acacia is also related to other types of acacias, such as the nilotica acacia and the African acacia, since these three species belong to the acacia genus. This is an important factor, since these plants sometimes become very similar to each other; and it can sometimes be difficult to distinguish one species from another.
Description of the confused acacia
The confused acacia can measure up to fifteen meters. Its leaves are green, and something characteristic of them, as well as other species of acacias, is that they remain green throughout the year.
This means that the confused acacia tree It is a tree whose leaves do not turn yellow or dry, as happens with other types of trees and plants. Also, keep in mind that the flowers are yellow.
In addition, it also produces pods along with the flowers. They get to be three inches long. These seeds have multiple uses, as well as the bark of this interesting plant. We will see these features later.
Habitat and location
The confused acacia lives in tropical areas. Unlike other acacias, which are usually found in arid or semi-arid areas. Well, in the case of this species, it is native to Southeast Asia, apparently it comes from Taiwan, and it has spread to various places, especially in many Pacific islands.
In fact, it is considered that in some places the confused acacia is invasive. In this sense, when we talk about endemic species, we refer to autochthonous species that grow in a specific place, in a single ecosystem. However, when it comes to invasive plants, we are talking about plants that have been introduced and are dangerous for a certain ecosystem.
That is the case in Hawaii, where the plant appears to have been introduced, causing problems in some of the region’s ecosystems. In this case, it is said that the confused acacia contains toxic substances that can be dangerous for humans.
The confused acacia toxicity It is of such a magnitude that it can lead to death. In this sense, both the leaves and the seeds and even the bark contain supplements of dimethyltryptamine, a very powerful pharmacological agent. In addition to this, it also contains cyanogenic glycosides. For this reason, it is recommended not to ingest them, as this can cause serious health problems.
However, despite their high toxicity, these components are used in the pharmacological industry; In addition, from them you can use their seeds and even leaves and bark to make home remedies. In fact, the inhabitants of the areas where the confused acacia grows usually consume it. To do this, they pulverize it, and therefore crush it, and prepare it in tea.
Another use that they give it is as a spice. In this way, it is used to season some foods or typical dishes of that region. However, to avoid any intoxication, the natives follow a whole procedure to prepare the seeds, in such a way that it does not affect the organism of those who consume said food.
Another use that is given to it, as already mentioned, is in the pharmaceutical industry, since its active components help to create medicines. In some parts of the world the seeds are sold to make tea infusions.
In addition to the pharmaceutical industry, as well as food, the confused acacia also has various uses that are beneficial for the industry and the work of the human being. Let’s see some of its uses.
In some Southeast Asian countries, such as Taiwan, the wood is used to make mine support beams. This is because its wood is very resistant. Also, due to its high carbon density, it is also used as charcoal for making fires. Especially in places where there is no natural gas or electric stove.