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Useful Temperate Plants

Gleditsia caspica

Desf.

Fabaceae

+ Synonyms

Caesalpiniodes caspium (Desf.) Kuntze

Gleditsia caspiana Bosc ex Loudon

Gleditsia darwinni de Vos

Gleditsia horrida caspica C.K.Schneid.

Common Name: Caspian Locust

No Image.

General Information

Gleditsia caspica is a deciduous tree with a dense, spherical top; it usually grows 9 - 12 metres tall. The trunk is excessively armed with formidable, branching, slightly flattened spines, 15cm or more long[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and source of materials. It is sometimes grown as a barrier hedge and living fence.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

74
Title
Flora of the USSR.
Publication
 
Author
Komarov. V. L.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Israel Program for Scientific Translation
Year
1968
ISBN
-
Description
An immense (25 or more large volumes) and not yet completed translation of the Russian flora. Full of information on plant uses and habitats but heavy going for casual readers. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.

Range

W. Asia - Iran (around the Caspian Sea), Azerbaijan

Habitat

Broad-leaved forests in the low montane belt[
261
Title
Legumes of Northern Eurasia
Publication
 
Author
Yakovlev. G. Sytin. A. & Roskov. Yu.
Publisher
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
1996
ISBN
0-947643-97-4
Description
For the academic only, a list of species growing in N. Eurasia with terse details on habitat, range, uses etc.
]. Found solitary or in groups in lowland woods, on dry soils typical of temperate dry woodland and thicket on sandy and rocky slopes, and swamp forests[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height12.00 m
Growth RateMedium
PollinatorsInsects
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Wild

Cultivation Details

Gleditsia caspica requires a hot summer if it is to thrive. It is fairly cold-hardy, with older trees being able to tolerate temperatures down to around -20°c when fully dormant. The tree has a habit though, especially when young, of producing new growth until quite late in the season. Especially in areas where the summers are not hot, this new growth will not ripen fully and will be liable to be cut back by the cold in the winter. Older plants tend to lose this habit. Generally, the plant should be considered to only be hardy to about -5°c when young, especially if growing in areas with cooler summers[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
].
Easily grown in a loamy soil, requiring a sunny position[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
]. Succeeds in most soils[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
] including sandy ones[
188
Title
The RHS Gardener's Encyclopedia of Plants and Flowers
Publication
 
Author
Brickell. C.
Publisher
Dorling Kindersley Publishers Ltd.
Year
1990
ISBN
0-86318-386-7
Description
Excellent range of photographs, some cultivation details but very little information on plant uses.
]. Established plants tolerate drought[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
] and atmospheric pollution[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
This species is often confused in cultivation with the closely related Gleditsia sinensis, many of the trees grown under that name are acturally this species[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
].
This tree is remarkable for the number and length of the spines growing on its trunk, which makes it one of the most formidably armed of temperate trees[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
].
Trees have a light canopy, they come into leaf late in the spring and drop their leaves in early autumn[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
] making them an excellent top storey tree in a woodland garden.
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].

Edible Uses

The pulp contained in the seedpod is used as a food[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].
The blackish-brown, scimitar-shaped seedpods are usually about 20 - 25cm long, 25 - 30mm wide, containing several oval-shaped, cinnamon-coloured seeds 8 - 10mm long[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

The roasted seeds are used as a coffee substitute[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
]

Medicinal

None known

Agroforestry Uses:

The plant is used in hedges, its spiny stems forming a formidable barrier[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].
When planted close together and severely pruned, most Gleditsia species form good windbreaks and hedges. With their usually very spiny trunks and branches, the hedge becomes an effective barrier, and with its ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen, it also enriches the soil[
865
Title
Chinese Economic Trees
Publication
 
Author
Woon Young Chun
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Commercial Press; Shanghai.
Year
1921
ISBN
 
Description
Brief details of many of the Chinese trees with economic importance. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
,
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Other Uses

A dye solution is prepared from the bark and leaves to obtain yellow and pink color. The dye is used for dyeing wool yarn as well as products made of wool[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

The seeds are used as beads[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

The closely related Gleditsia sinensis has a saponaceous pulp inside the seed pod that can be used as a soap substitute[
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
]. It is quite probable that this species can be similarly used[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

The wood is hard, strong, durable, coarse-grained[
74
Title
Flora of the USSR.
Publication
 
Author
Komarov. V. L.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Israel Program for Scientific Translation
Year
1968
ISBN
-
Description
An immense (25 or more large volumes) and not yet completed translation of the Russian flora. Full of information on plant uses and habitats but heavy going for casual readers. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
,
82
Title
Manual of the Trees of N. America.
Publication
 
Author
Sargent. C. S.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/
Publisher
Dover Publications Inc. New York.
Year
1965
ISBN
0-486-20278-X
Description
Two volumes, a comprehensive listing of N. American trees though a bit out of date now. Good details on habitats, some details on plant uses. Not really for the casual reader. It can be downloaded from the internet.
]. It is used in joinery and turnery for making different utensils, household and economic items[
1470
Title
Gleditsia caspica Desf. Fabaceae
Publication
Ethnobotany of the Caucasus, European Ethnobotany,
Author
Naiba Mehdiyeva, Valida Alizade, Narel Y. Paniagua Zambrana,
Website
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-50009-6_67-1
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Year
2016
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Propagation

Seed - pre-soak for 24 hours in warm water and then sow in spring in a greenhouse[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
]. The seed should have swollen up, in which case it can be sown, if it has not swollen then soak it for another 24 hours in warm water. If this does not work then file away some of the seed coat but be careful not to damage the embryo[
78
Title
Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers.
Publication
 
Author
Sheat. W. G.
Publisher
MacMillan and Co
Year
1948
ISBN
-
Description
A bit dated but a good book on propagation techniques with specific details for a wide range of plants.
]. Further soaking should then cause the seed to swell. One it has swollen, the seed should germinate within 2 - 4 weeks at 20°c. As soon as they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual deep pots and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer. Give the plants some protection from the cold for their first few winters outdoors.
Cite as: Temperate Plants Database, Ken Fern. temperate.theferns.info. 2019-06-24. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Gleditsia+caspica>

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