Camellia sasanqua Thunb. - THEACEAE

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Botanical descriptions Habitat and ecology Distribution

Botanical descriptions :

Diagnostic characters : Evergreen trees. Leaves simple alternate and spiral, glabrous, margin dentate. Flowers bisexual, white with numerous stamens. Fruit a capsule.
Habit : Small, evergreen tree up to 10 m tall.
Trunk & bark : Bole straight, bark reddish-brown, thin, smooth.
Branches and branchlets or twigs : Twigs terete, glabrous.
Exudates : Exudate absent.
Leaves : Leaves simple, alternate and spiral, glabrous, elliptic, apex acuminate, base acute, margin slightly dentate.
Primary vein single, secondary veins obtuse, tertiary veins reticulate.
Stipules absent.
Inflorescences or flowers : Flowers white, arranged in an 1--3-flowered inflorescence, axillary, bisexual, pedicels up to 3 mm long.
Fruits : Fruit capsule up to 2.5 cm in diameter, splitting into 2 - 3 irregular sections.
Seeds : Seeds many.

Habitat and ecology :

Common in the understorey of evergreen forest.

Distribution :

Cambodia, Japan, Vietnam, Laos (Khammouan).

Remark/notes/uses :
A non drying edible oil can be obtained from the seeds.

Specimens studied :
BT 159, BT 880 (Herbarium of Faculty of Sciences-NUoL, NHN-Leiden and CIRAD-Montpellier).

Literature :
Sealy J. R. 1958. A revision of the genus Camellia. The Royal Horticultural Society, London.

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