On the hills the baobab and hyphaene palm are characteristic; on the plateau are stretches of open savanna, and park-like country with clumps of silk cotton and shea-butter trees.
It is related closely to the famous baobab of tropical Africa.
The forest vegetation, largely confined to the "Isle of Isles" and the southern uplands, includes the Adansonia (baobab), which in the Fazogli district attains gigantic proportions, the tamarind, of which bread is made, the deleb palm, several valuable gum trees (whence the term Sennari often applied in Egypt to gumarabic), some dyewoods, ebony, ironwood and many varieties of acacia.
On the plateau many forms common elsewhere in East Africa, such as the Borassus palm and the baobab tree, are missing.
These are generally unproductive, and covered with stunted wood; but the lower country is fertile, and] finely clothed with the baobab, the tamarind and various valuable fruit-trees.
Among the rare big trees - found chiefly in the north-east - are baobab and palmyra and certain fruit trees, one bearing a pink plum.
Other trees, found chiefly on the plateaus, are the baobab, the shea-butter tree, the locust tree, gambier, palms, including the date and dum palm (Hyphaene), the tamarind, and, in the arid regions, the acacia and mimosa.
The baobab and the karite (shea butter tree) are found only in the Niger districts.
Large areas are covered with brushwood, among which are scattered baobab, shea-butter, bread fruit, corkwood and silk-cotton trees.
The coastlands of Natal and Portuguese East Africa, the vegetation is abundant, and mangroves, palms, baobab and bombax trees flourish.
In the savannas the most characteristic trees are the monkey bread tree or baobab (Adansonia digitata), doom palm (Hyphaene) and euphorbias.
On the western side of the island the baobab, the tamarind, the rotra (Eugenia sp.), the rofia palm, and several species of fan-palm (Hyphaene) and of Ficus are prominent; and the mango (introduced) grows to a large tree.
In the savannas are gigantic baobab trees.