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Useful Tropical Plants

Handroanthus billbergii

(Bureau & K.Schum.) S.O.Grose

Bignoniaceae

+ Synonyms

Tabebuia billbergii (Bureau & K.Schum.) Standl.

Tabebuia ecuadorensis Standl.

Tecoma billbergii Bureau & K.Schum.

Common Name:

Handroanthus billbergii
Flowering tree
Photograph by: Eduardo Dios
Creative Commons License
Handroanthus billbergii Handroanthus billbergii Handroanthus billbergii

General Information

Handroanthus billbergii is a deciduous shrub or a tree that can grow from 3 - 12 metres tall[
888
Title
Phytologia Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Harold and Alma Moldenke; New Jersey.
Year
1976
ISBN
 
Description
A botanical publication with a specific purpose of publishing the names and descriptions of newly described species. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].
This species is one of the most important timber trees in Ecuador, where it is commonly harvested from the wild for local use[
887
Title
Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden Vol. 79
Publication
 
Author
van der Werff H. (Editor)
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden; St. Louis.
Year
1992
ISBN
0026-6493
Description
A botanical journal, it includes an article on the ethnobotanical uses of the plant family Bignoniaceae. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References


Range

S. America - Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela; Caribbean - Netherland Antilles, Aruba, Cuba.

Habitat

Dry rocky chaparrel at elevations up to 500 metres in Venezuela[
592
Title
Contributions to The Flora of Venezuela.
Publication
 
Author
Steyermark J.A. Et al
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Chicago Natural History Museum; Chicago.
Year
1951 - 1957
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent flora, though made at a time when botanical knowledge of the areas was still very lacking.
]. Dry coastal forests, thickets[
888
Title
Phytologia Vol. 35
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Harold and Alma Moldenke; New Jersey.
Year
1976
ISBN
 
Description
A botanical publication with a specific purpose of publishing the names and descriptions of newly described species. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Properties

Other Uses Rating *  *  *
HabitDeciduous Tree
Height10.00 m
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details



The tree is the national tree of Venezuela[
887
Title
Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden Vol. 79
Publication
 
Author
van der Werff H. (Editor)
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden; St. Louis.
Year
1992
ISBN
0026-6493
Description
A botanical journal, it includes an article on the ethnobotanical uses of the plant family Bignoniaceae. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

None known

Other Uses

The wood is very hard, heavy and very durable. It is widely used as timber within its native range. Traditionally, it is used for making items such as corn grinders[
887
Title
Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden Vol. 79
Publication
 
Author
van der Werff H. (Editor)
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden; St. Louis.
Year
1992
ISBN
0026-6493
Description
A botanical journal, it includes an article on the ethnobotanical uses of the plant family Bignoniaceae. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

We have no more specific information on the wood of this plant, but most species of Handroanthus, almost certainly including this one, produce a very hard, heavy and durable timber known as Ipe. The general description of Ipe wood is as follows:-
The heartwood is yellowish brown to dark olive brown, sometimes with thin veins; it is clearly demarcated from the 3 - 9cm wide band of sapwood. The texture is usually fine, though it is medium in some species; the grain is interlocked; there are canals in the wood containing a greenish-yellow deposit of lapachol. The wood is very heavy; very hard; elastic; it is very durable, even in contact with the soil, resisting fungi, dry wood borers and termites. It seasons slowly, but with only a low risk of checking or distortion; once dry it is moderately stable in service. The wood has a fairly high blunting effect - stellite-tipped and tungsten carbide tools are recommended; there can be some difficulties due to the interlocked grain; filling is recommended in order to get a good finish; nailing and screwing are good , but require pre-boring; gluing is correct for internal use only, and needs to be done with care because the wood is so dense. A very durable and strong wood, it has a very wide range of uses, especially for outdoor applications. It is used for making high class furniture, cabinet work, heavy construction, railway sleepers, bridges, hydraulic works, industrial flooring, posts and poles, turnery, musical instruments, tool handles, veneer etc[
848
Title
Tropix 7
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://tropix.cirad.fr/en
Publisher
CIRAD
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line guide to the timbers of 245 species of trees.
].

Propagation

Seed -

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