This section is from the book "The Standard Cyclopedia Of Horticulture Vol2", by L. H. Bailey. See also: Western Garden Book: More than 8,000 Plants - The Right Plants for Your Climate - Tips from Western Garden Experts.
(two-colored spikes). Legu-minosae. Stiff shrubs, with bipinnate leaves and small leathery lfts, and very small polygamous flowers in spikes, sometimes mentioned as useful for cult, in warmhouses. The species are few, in tropical Asia, Africa, and Austral. Flowers in the upper part of the spike perfect, those of the lower part bearing 10 long filiform staminodia; corolla not papilionaceous, comprising 5 strap-shaped petals that are more or less united at base; stamens 10 in the perfect flowers, free, slightly exserted: pod narrow, compressed, mostly or nearly indehiscent. D. platycarpa, Welw., is or has been in cultivation: a slender spiny tree. 10-15 ft. high: pinnae 10-18 pairs, the leaflets 1-2 lines long and very narrow: spikes usually shorter than the leaves: pod twisted, 2-4 in. long, about 1 in. broad. Guinea. D. nutans, Benth. (Cailliea Dichrostachys, Guill. & Perr.), has been intro, in S. Calif.: spiny, much contorted shrub or small tree: leaves glabrous or pubescent, acacia-like; pinnae 5-10 pairs; leaflets 10-20 or more pairs, sessile, linear or linear-oblong, rarely as long as 1/2in.: flowers in dense axillary twin or solitary spikes, the upper ones sulfur-yellow and the lower ones rosy lilac: pod twisted, 1/3in. or less broad.
L. H. B