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Kaliandra (Calliandra houstoniana)

Kaliandra (Calliandra houstoniana) is a plant species in Fabaceae, grows rapidly to 2.5-3.5 m tall in 6 months and 3-5 m high in the first year with a 60% light quantity, widely used for energy wood, animal feed, erosion control, soil nitrogen repair, fire retardant, shade and source of nectar for bees.

C. houstoniana grows to a maximum of 12 m and a stem diameter of 20 cm, red or gray bark covered by small, pale oval-shaped lenticels. Increasingly to the tip of the stem tends to jagged and reddish brown stems have a red tip. Taproot system is supported by finer roots with very large numbers and extends beyond the soil surface.

Dlium Kaliandra (Calliandra houstoniana)


The leaves are small, compounded pairs, soft texture and dark green, 20 cm long, 15 cm wide and at night will fold toward the trunk by the motion of the dictation due to changes in light to dark. The canopy widens to the side and is very dense.

Flower bunches develop in a centralized position and flowers cluster around the end of the stem with threads generally white at the base and a striking red at the end. Andromonecious flowers and after fertilization will produce fruit and seeds will develop for 90 days

Kaliandra blooms throughout the year, but the peak period is March and July. Each flower blooms at 4:00 pm and remains in bloom only overnight and then withers. Each bunch can flower for 90-120 days. Flowers are always more than fruit at a ratio of 1:20.

Seeds will be formed if random intermarriage occurs but also self-pollination which causes low genetic diversity. Pollination is carried out by bats (Chiroptera) and moths (Sphingidae). This plant is found in small populations for 30-60 individuals.





Pods will form for two to four months and mature to lengths of up to 14 cm and width of 2 cm. Straight, brownish in color, usually containing 8-12 oval and flat seeds. The mature seed surface has black or brown spots and a distinctive horseshoe-shaped mark on both flat surfaces.

C. houstoniana is a popular multipurpose tree because it is easy to plant, grows fast and sprouts again after being pruned repeatedly. Planted for fuelwood, animal feed, conservation and improvement of soil quality as a nitrogen binder, shade and flowering throughout the year is very important for honey production.

Kaliandra grows naturally along riverbanks and quickly occupies disturbed areas, but cannot withstand poorly drained soil and often cannot compete with other secondary vegetation. It lives at an altitude of up to 1,860 m, but will grow very well in 250-800 m with rainfall 2000-2400 mm/year and dry season 3-6 months.

This plant requires a daily temperature of 22-28C on various types of soil. It thrives quickly and covers open and marginal land. Farmers use Kaliandra to fight weeds including grass.

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Tracheophyta
Subphylum: Angiospermae
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Mimosoideae
Tribe: Ingeae
Genus: Calliandra
Species: Calliandra houstoniana
Varieties: Calliandra houstoniana var. acapulcensis, Calliandra houstoniana var. anomala, Calliandra houstoniana var. calothyrsus

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