Botanical name : Acacia catechu Willd.
Common name : Khair, Katha tree, Cutch tree
Family : Leguminosae
Sub Family : Mimosoideae

Plate 12.1(a) Acacia catechu tree
Plate 12.1(b) Leaves and pods

  • A moderate sized deciduous tree with light feathery crown with crooked brown bole,
  • Bark dark brown and red inside
  • Branches are glabrous armed with recurved thorns
  • The species is distinguished into three distinct varieties viz. Acacia catechu, variety catechuoides, variety sundra and variety catechu.
  • It is found throughout India except in humid and temperate region.
  • It is widely distributed between 900-1200 m from Jammu to Assam.
  • Variety catechu is found in Sikkim, Tarai, West Begal, Assam and upper Mynmar, Shiwalik hills of H.P. and Punjab and Haryana.
  • Variety sundra is found in Indian Peninsular region and parts of Burma.
  • Temperature - Maximum 40°C -50°C; Minimum 1°C
  • Rainfall - 500mm to 2000mm
  • Altitude - 1200m
  • Acacia catechu grows on wide variety of soils such as sandy, gravelly alluviam, loam with varying proportions of sand and clay and black cotton soils.
  • It is capable of growing on shallow soils with murram or kankar on which few other species can grow.
  • Leaf-fall - January-February
  • Leaf renewal - April-May
  • Flowering - April to August
  • Fruiting - September-October
  • Seed collection – October-November, December

Silvicultural characters

Strong light demander, frost and fire hardy, wind firm, browsed by animals.
Last modified: Tuesday, 22 May 2012, 8:03 AM