Peanut butter cassia

Peanut butter cassia

Senna didymobotrya (Fabaceae)

Common Name:

Peanut butter cassia

Scientific Name:

Senna didymobotrya (Fabaceae)

Alternative common names:

Oatmeal cassia, popcorn senna, wild senna (English); grondboontjiebotterkassia (Afrikaans); munwahuku (Shona)


An evergreen, rounded shrub or small tree reaching up to 3m high. The young shoots are softly downy and 5cm long. Bright yellow flowers form in upright racemes. Green seed pods are downy, soft and flattened and turn dark brown. This senna has poisonous leaves.

Additional Information

Where does this species come from?

Tropical Africa

What is its invasive status in South Africa?

CARA 2002 - Category 1 NEMBA - a. 1b in Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpop, Mpumalanga and Western Cape. b. Not listed elsewhere.

Where in South Africa is it a problem?

KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and Eastern Cape

How does it spread?


Why is it a problem?

Competes with indigenous species. Poisonous

What does it look like?

General description: A wide-spreading evergreen shrub to small tree growing up to 3m in height.
Leaves: Dark green leaves with 8-21 pairs of leaflets in opposite pairs 2-5cm long.
Flowers: Bright yellow flowers in upright racemes prevalent throughout the year.
Fruit/seeds: Green pods turning dark brown that are softly downy and flattened

Does the plant have any uses?

Ornament, hedging

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