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Millettia pinnata

Family : Fabaceae

Pongamia is a dense tree with spreading branches, growing between 5 – 10 metres in height. It has bright glossy leaves with long, oval shaped leaflets and pointed tips. Pongamia loses its leaves very briefly during the cooler months and put on a display of spectacular bronze new growth.

Beautiful pinkish-lilac pea flowers occur in crowded sprays along branchlets. These can become so thick that they weigh the branches down. Fruits are woody, flat, brown pods that contain a hard, reddish seed. The seeds are poisonous to humans as it is almost half oil. However, beetle larvae often eat the seeds.

This is a fast growing tree that is very beautiful. It grows well in most soils but prefers areas with good drainage. It fixes nitrogen particularly well for the soil and is excellent for shade and as a windbreak.


Quick Facts

Flowers September to March
Fruit November to April
Coastal Zone Hind Dune
Fauna Habitat Insects
Growth Habit Tree
Typical Height 5m - 10m
Soils Well Drained Soils
Amount of Sun Full or Partial Sun
Amount of Water Moderately Wet Areas to Wet Areas
Salt Tolerance Moderately Tolerant


NQ Dry Tropics gratefully acknowledges the contribution of the Coastal Dry Tropics Landcare Group Incorporated (CTDLI) to the development of this page's information.

Related information

Pongamia © NQ Dry Tropics

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