Acacia mangium is native to Australia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. It is a low-elevation tree species associated with rain forest margins and disturbed, well-drained acid soils. Acacia mangium is one of the major fast growing leguminous species used in plantation forestry programs throughout Asia and the Pacific. It fixes nitrogen and it can regenerate rapidly. It has rapid early growth, and can attain a height of 30 meters (100 ft) and a diameter of over 60 cm (24 in). It occur naturally at the edges of mangrove stands, in the transition area between forests and rivers and grassland, and in areas recently disturbed, especially by fire.
Due to its rapid growth and tolerance of very poor soils Acacia mangium is playing an increasingly important role in efforts to sustain a commercial supply of tree products while reducing pressure on natural forest ecosystems. Acacia mangium is a popular wood for furniture, agriculture implements, crates, particleboard, and wood chips. It is also suitable for manufacturing charcoal briquettes and activated carbon. It is a common pulp and paper crop in Sumatra and Vietnam. Non-timber uses include honey production, adhesives, and as an ornamental and shade tree for roadsides or other urban forestry uses. Sawdust from this tree provides good-quality substrate for shiitake mushrooms. Since Acacia mangium can grow on marginal soils, many farmers choose to plant this species to improve soil fertility of fallowed fields. Acacia mangium trees with diameters of 7 cm (3 in) are fire resistant. Therefore, they can be used as fire breaks.
- Elevation: 0-800 meters (0-2.625 ft)
- Rainfall: 1000-4500 mm (40-175 in)
- Temperature: 12-35°C (54-95°F) *It can survive light frost
- pH: 4.2–7.5 Often in grasslands and on margins of lowland primary forests.
Capable of ranging from Tropical Very Dry to Moist through Subtropical Dry to Wet Forest Life Zones. Weeding of noxious plants such as climbers, creepers, and vines is recommended. Less harmful weeds can be left in the field to maintain lateral competition.
Harvesting and Seed Production
The seed-pods of Acacia mangium are broad, linear, irregularly coiled, and up to 3-5 mm (.1 -.2in) wide and 7-10 cm (2.75 – 3.5 in) long. The seeds are brown, black, shiny, vary in shape, and range from 3-5 mm (1 - .2 in) long and 2-3 mm (0.07 - 0.1 in) wide. Seeds mature 6-7 months after flowering. Acacia mangium will naturally hybridize with Acacia auriculiformis. There are 80,000 to 100,000 seeds per kilogram (36,500 – 45,500/lb). Acacia mangium will naturally regenerate in clear-cut and burned fields. However, nursery propagation is the most common regeneration practice.
Pests and Diseases
The major pests associated with A. mangium cause damage to seedlings, branches, and stems, or wilting caused by root damage. Damage does not result in death, but may deform or suppress tree growth. Most disease agents of A. mangium are associated with or caused by fungi. Common disease symptoms are damping off, heart rot, powdery mildew, stem galls, dieback, leaf spots, and root rot.