Senna siamea (Lam.) H.S.Irwin & Barneby

Last updated: 7 August 2015

Scientific Name

Senna siamea (Lam.) H.S.Irwin & Barneby


Cassia arayatensis "sensu Naves, non Litv.", Cassia arborea Macfad., Cassia florida Vahl, Cassia gigantea DC., Cassia siamea Lam., Cassia sumatrana Roxb., Cassia sumatrana DC., Chamaefistula gigantea G.Don, Sciacassia siamea (Lam.) Britton & Rose, Senna sumatrana (DC.) Roxb. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Johor, sebusok, guah hitam [2], jahar, jeragor, joar, mezali, sebusok, sibusuk [3]
English Siamese senna, kassod tree, Thailand shower [2], black wood cassia, cassod tree, Djoowar, iron wood, iron wood tree, kasood tree, Thai copper rod [3]
China Tie dao mu [3]
India Achingudi, alasael, aramana, beati, bendaka, daiyal, jhau, karungkonnai, kassod, kodiari, koriti, manga konnei, manja konnai, manje-konne, mezali, ponnavarai, seemtangedu, sima tangedu, vakai [3]
Indonesia  Johar (General); bujuk, dulang (Sumatra) [2]; johor, juhar, juwar [3]
Thailand Khilek (General); khilek-luang (Northern); khilek-yai (Central) [2]; keelek kaen, kheelek, kheelek baan, kheelek kaen, kheelek luang, kheelek yai, mae-khee-leh, pha-doh, phak chee-lee, ya-haa [3]
Laos 'khi:z hlek [2][3]
Philippines Robles [2][3]
Cambodia Ângkanh [2][3]
Vietnam C[aa]y mu[oof]ng den, mu[oof]ng xi[ee]m, humbo (Thuân Hai) [2], ang kanh, ang kel, muong xiem, khi lech, muong, muong nui, ong can [3]
Japan Tagaya-san-no-ki [3]
East Africa Ikengeta [3]
Kenya Ndege owinuoyieko, oyieko, oyteko [3]
Nigeria Dorawar turawa, kasia [3].

Geographical Distributions

Senna sia­mea is native to South and Southeast Asia, from Thailand and Burma (Myanmar) to Southern In­dia and Sri Lanka. However, it has been cultivat­ed for so long, that its exact origin is unknown. It is widely planted throughout the tropics and is lo­cally naturalised. [2]

Botanical Description

S. siamea is comes from the family Leguminosae. It is a tree that can reach up to 6-12(-30) m tall. The spreading branches form a dense rounded crown. The bark is almost smooth, grey and with ribbed young shoots. [2]

The leaves are simply paripinnate, oblong-ellipti­cal in outline and measure 10-35 cm long. The stipules are subulate, measure 1 mm long and very early caducous. The petiole is cylindrical but with a shallow ventral groove that is 1.5-3.5 cm long and glandless. The rachis is 4.5-25 cm long and glandless. The peti­olule is 2-4 mm long. The leaflets are in 4-16 pairs, subcoria­ceous, oblong to ovate-oblong, measuring 3-8 cm x 1-2.5 cm, 2-4 times as long as wide, with unequal-sided rounded to wedge-shaped base, rounded to retuse or blunt at apex, often mucronate, glossy and hairless above, dull and rough to delicately hairy be­low. [2]

The inflorescence is erect, terminal, 10-60-flow­ered, panicle leafy, measures 15-60 cm long and composed of numerous dense corymbs measuring up to 10 cm x 5-6 cm. The peduncle is 5-7 cm long and robust. The bracts are obovate in the lower half and suddenly narrow to become linear and acute for 3-6 mm long. The bracts are hairy but early caducous. The bracteoles are absent. The pedicel is 2-3.5 cm long. The 5 sepals are unequal, rounded-ovate, measure 4-9 mm long, thick, hairy, repanding-reflexed and long persistent. The 5 pe­tals are orbicular-obovate, measure 1-2 cm long, yellow, hairless while the upper part is with claw 1-2 mm long. There are 10 sta­mens where the 3 lower ones are with filaments 6 mm long and anthers 5 mm long. The other 3 upper ones are staminoidal while the 4 meridian ones are with filaments 3-4 mm long and anthers 5 mm long. [2]

The ovary is shortly hairy, and with style 4-5 mm long, while the stigma is in the form of a dot. The pod is flat­tened, 20-30-seeded, measuring 15-30 cm x 12-16 mm, al­ternately bulging and depressed in the centre, with thick rim, slightly hairless, dull and finally dehiscent. The seed is very flat ovoid, measuring 6.5-8 mm x 6 mm, light brown and glossy. The areole is oblong-elliptical measuring 3-4.5 mm x 1 mm. [2]


S. siamea can grow in a range of cli­matic conditions, but is particularly suited to the lowland tropics with a monsoon climate with a mean annual rainfall of 500-2800 mm, optimally about 1000 mm. Under semi-arid condi­tions (500-700 mm), S. siamea will only grow when its roots have access to groundwater. It re­quires a mean minimum temperature of 20°C, ranging from 14-28°C, and a mean maximum temperature of 31°C, ranging from 24-36°C. The maximum length of the dry period should not ex­ceed 4-8 months. It is susceptible to cold and frost and does not do well at altitudes above 1300 m. Light requirements are high. S. siamea performs best on deep, well-drained, fertile soils with pH 5.5-7.5, but will grow on de­graded, lateritic soils but provided drainage is not im­peded. It grows poorly on infertile, poorly drained podzolic soils. It is not tolerant of salinity, but is reasonably tolerant of acid soil conditions. [2]

Chemical Constituent

No documentation

Plant Part Used

No documentation

Traditional Use

No documentation

Preclinical Data

No documentation

Clinical Data

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing


Figure 1 : The line drawing of S. siamea [2]


  1. The Plant List. Ver 1.1. Senna siamea (Lamk) Irwin & Barneby. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013. [updated 2010 Jul 14; cited 2015 Aug 14]. Available from:
  2. Gutteridge RC. Senna siamea (Lamk) Irwin & Barneby. In: Faridah Hanum I & van der Maesen LJG, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 11: Auxiliary plants. Leiden, Netherlands: Backhuys Publisher; 1997.  p. 232-236
  3. Quattrocchi U. CRC World Dictionary of Plant Names: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume V R-Z. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press; 2012. p. 248.