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The mature trees are able to survive fires that sweep through grasslands destroying other vegetation. Mpingo grows in a variety of environmental conditions and is native to 26 African countries. It is often found in dry, rocky areas, although more frequently in the mixed deciduous forest and savannahs of the coastal regions of Tanzania and Mozambique. It is a nitrogen fixing species that improves soil fertility and helps maintain soil stability. The leaves provide fodder for migrating herbivores on the east African savannahs and for domestic livestock.