Griffonia simplicifolia is a woody climbing shrub native to West Africa and Central Africa. It grows to about 3 m, and bThe seeds of the plant are used as a herbal supplement for their 5-Hydroxytryptophan content. 5-Hydroxytryptophan may be extracted from seeds as a supplement which as a serotonin precursor is beneficial in serotonin deficiency. Ongoing research suggests that 5-Hydroxytryptophan may also be beneficial in mood disorders including mild to moderate clinical depression and sleeping disorders. ears greenish flowers followed by black pods.