Cratoxylum formosum (Jack) Dyer - GUTTIFERAE

Basionym : Elodea formosa Jack

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Botanical descriptions Habitat and ecology Distribution

Botanical descriptions :

Diagnostic characters : Bole spiny at base, bark fissured. Exudates watery, brown-red. Leaves simple, opposite, glaucous below. Flowers pink on leafless twigs. Fruit a capsule.
Habit : Deciduous tree up to 15 m tall.
Trunk & bark : Bole straight or leaning, bark dark grey, fissured and flaking, young stems usually with spines.
Branches and branchlets or twigs : Twigs terete, glabrous.
Exudates : Exudate watery, brownish-red.
Leaves : Leaves simple, opposite, finely hairy when young but not tomentose, elliptic, apex slightly acute, base attenuate, margin entire.
Midrib flat above, secondary veins looped, obtuse, intramarginal, tertiary veins reticulate.
Stipules absent.
Inflorescences or flowers : Flowers white, arranged in 3--5-flowered inflorescence, axillary, on leafless twigs, bisexual, pedicels up to 3 mm long.
Fruits : Fruit capsule up to 1.8 cm long, covered by persistent sepals, splitting in 3 sections.
Seeds : Seeds many, winged at one end.

Habitat and ecology :

Widespread and common in open forest.

Distribution :

Burma (Myanmar), South China, Thailand, Indochina, Laos (Khammouan).

Remark/notes/uses :
Bark can be used as brown coloured dye, wood is very hard and durable.The young shoots are edible and used as a raw vegetable.

Specimens studied :
BT 234, LAO 269, LAO 442, LAO 575, LAO 729, LAO 900, LAO 1138 (Herbarium of Faculty of Sciences-NUoL, NHN-Leiden and CIRAD-Montpellier).

Literature :
Gardner S., Sidisunthorn P. & Anusarnsunthorn V. 2000. A field guide to Forest Trees of Northern Thailand. Kobfai Publishing Project. Bangkok. Thailand.

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