Castanopsis paucispina is an evergreen tree that can grow from 12 - 30 metres tall. The bole can be 20 - 60cm in diameter[
This is one of many timber-bearing species in the genus Castanopsis that is harvested from the wild on a commercial basis and traded under the name Berangan[
Southeast Asia - Malaysia (Sabah, Sarawak)
Growing on slopes in mixed dipterocarp forest on basalt-derived soils; at elevations up to 1,100 metres[
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Castanopsis species are generally tolerant of a range of soils, preferably well-drained[
]. They succeed in full sun, though young plants generally grow best in dappled woodland shade.
The tree does not respond well to coppicing[
The obovoid to subglobose seed is around 40mm long and 30mm wide with a thick, woody shell; there is one seed per cupule[
Although we have no specific information for this species, the seeds of all the species of Castanopsis are more or less edible and most if not all of them will have been used for food in times of shortage, when better foods were not available.
The seed is usually cooked before eating, though it can also be eaten raw. It can be eaten whole, though it is more commonly dried, then ground into a powder and used as a thickening in stews etc or mixed with cereals for making bread.
The main disadvantage of the seed is that it is often rich in tannins, making it bitter and astringent. These tannins can be largely removed by soaking the seeds in water then throwing the water away. The process should be repeated until the seed no longer tastes bitter.
The bark is a source of tannins and can be used as a dye, to weatherproof fibres etc[
The branches and stems of many Castanopsis species are used as bed logs in mushroom cultivation[
The heartwood is dark brown or dark red-brown; it is clearly demarcated from the light brown sapwood which often has a green tinge. The texture is coarse and uneven; the grain fairly straight but sometimes interlocked, maybe lustrous when first cut; there is no distinctive odour or taste when dry. The wood is strong, moderately hard, moderately heavy to heavy, moderately durable and very difficult to treat. It seasons fairly slowly, without any defects except for some staining; shrinkage is very high. It is easy to work, easy to split, moderately easy to resaw and easy to cross-cut; planning is easy and the planed surface is smooth, it takes a good finish. A light hardwood, it is suitable for medium to heavy construction under cover, furniture making, packing cases and pallets. Some species split well and are used for shingles[
The wood is a good fuel and can be used to make charcoal[
Seed - easy to germinate if sown fresh. Self-sown seedlings can be transplanted[
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