Prioria balsamifera

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Prioria balsamifera
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Genus: Prioria
P. balsamifera
Binomial name
Prioria balsamifera
(Verm.) Breteler
  • Gossweilerodendron balsamiferum (Verm.) Harms
  • Pterygopodium balsamiferum (Verm.)

Prioria balsamifera, the agba or tola, is a tall forest tree in the family Fabaceae. It is native to lowland tropical rainforest in west Africa, from Nigeria southwards to the Congo basin in Angola, Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, scattered or in local pockets, favouring deep soil and plenty of moisture. It is threatened by habitat loss and over-cutting for timber.[3][1]

It is a large to very large tree growing to 60 m tall, with a trunk 70–180 cm diameter with resinous bark. The leaves are pinnate, with 6–10 alternately-arranged leaflets 4–9 cm long and 2–4 cm broad. The flowers are small, with four (rarely five) white sepals 2 mm long and no petals; they are produced in panicles. The pod is 10–14 cm long and 3.5–4.5 cm broad, superficially resembling a maple samara with a single 2–3 cm seed at one end, with the rest of the pod modified into a wing. It has a high spruce gum content.[4][5][6] [7]

Other names for this tree are achi, egba, emongi (Nigeria), tola blanc (Congo-Brazzaville), tola branca (Angola), N'Tola (Zaire).


  1. ^ a b African Regional Workshop (Conservation & Sustainable Management of Trees, Zimbabwe) 1998. Gossweilerodendron balsamiferum. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Archived 2014-06-27 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Breteler FJ. (1999). "A revision of Prioria, including Gossweilerodendron, Kingiodendron, Oxystigma, and Pterygopodium (Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae-Detarieae) with emphasis on Africa". Wageningen Agr. Univ. Pap. 99: 1–61.
  3. ^ International Legume Database & Information Service: Gossweilerodendron balsamiferum
  4. ^ Flore du Cameroun: Gossweilerodendron (pdf file; in French) Archived 2006-11-24 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Watson, L., & Dallwitz, M. J. (2005). The Genera of Leguminosae: Gossweilerodendron
  6. ^ Tropical timbers: Gossweilerodendron (in German)
  7. ^ Ehlers,R.C.;Sandermann, W.: Chemische Studien an Tropenhölzern—Sechste Mitteilung: Untersuchungen über harzhaltige Tropenhölzer. Holz als Roh- und Werkstoff. May 1961, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 187-195. (in German) Harzhaltige Tropenhölzer