This slideshow requires JavaScript.

There is a big variety of naturally occurring trees with different types of flowers and seeds. Also many mango and cashew trees which were introduced from other continents. I suppose the mango was brought from India to East Africa many centuries ago by traders. The cashew was originally from north east Brazil so perhaps it was introduced by Portuguese travellers who settled in both Brazil, Goa (India) and East Africa several hundred years ago. The name “cashew” comes from a Portuguese name for the fruit.

Mpingo or African blackwood

I have spent hundreds of hours walking through woodlands of Masasi District on roads, footpaths and sometimes off the trails altogether. I was never sure what the mpingo looked like until I was shown some which were growing in the garden of a house a few miles from Masasi town. There was no mature tree around but I know the seeds can be scattered by the wind. How many  young trees are cut down by farmers because they produce no food? After 70 years the young tree may be extremely valuable but I suspect that people are interested only in what they can harvest, not what their grandchildren could gain from a mature tree. Mpingo wood is one of the world’s most valuable kinds and probably always will be. In Kilwa District much work has been done by MCDI to encourage people to conserve and harvest mpingo timber responsibly.

Valuable wood growing here, but will it grow to maturity in this garden?

Valuable wood growing here, but will it grow to maturity in this garden?


  1. Mchihiya · December 28, 2013

    I have visited your WordPress account it has a lot of information about my district thank you for keeping and spreading information about Masasi.

  2. grahamcole · December 28, 2013

    Mchihiya, thank you for your comment, I’m very pleased to publicise the beautiful Masasi District. Perhaps you can tell me if water is easy to get in the town now. Are there many people with water pipes direct to their houses?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s