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Useful Tropical Plants

Litsea glutinosa

(Lour.) C.B.Rob.

Lauraceae

+ Synonyms

Litsea laurifolia (Jacq.) F.M.Bailey

Litsea sebifera Pers.

Sebifera glutinosa Lour.

Tetranthera laurifolia Jacq.

Common Name: Indian Laurel

Litsea glutinosa
Close-up of a fruir
Photograph by: Unknown
Image credit to Australian National Botanic Gardens
Litsea glutinosa Litsea glutinosa Litsea glutinosa Litsea glutinosa Litsea glutinosa Litsea glutinosa

General Information

Indian laurel can be deciduous or evergreen[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
]. A small to medium-sized tree growing 3 - 20 metres tall, it has a straight or curved, unbuttressed bole up to 60cm in diameter[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
,
721
Title
Commercial Woods of the Philippines; Their Preparation and Uses
Publication
Philippines Bureau of Forestry Bulletin No. 14
Author
Schneider E.E.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Bureau of Forestry; Manilla.
Year
1916
ISBN
 
Description
A series of booklets dealing with various aspects of the Philippine forests. This volume looks at the preparation and uses of the commercial woods of the Philippines. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and for a range of commodities. The wood is used locally and also traded as a source of 'medang'.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
931
Title
Thai Forest Bulletin (Botany) No. 39
Publication
 
Author
Thawatchai Santisuk (Editor)
Publisher
The Forest Herbarium (BKF); Chatuchak, Bangkok.
Year
2011
ISBN
0495-3843
Description
A botanical journal, publishing papers on taxonomy (especially vascular plants), nomenclature, phylogeny, systematics, plant geography, and floristics; also morphology, palynology, cytotaxonomy, chemotaxonomy, anatomy and other relevant disciplines.

Range

E. Asia - southern China, Indian subcontinent, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines to Australia.

Habitat

Forest margins, streamsides, sparse forests or thickets at elevations of 500 - 1,900 metres[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
]. Mixed primary and secondary forest and thickets[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *  *
HabitEvergreen Tree
Height15.00 m
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details

Not known

Edible Uses

The fruits have a sweet creamy edible pulp[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Medicinal

The root bark and leaves are used medicinally to reduce fever, reduce swelling, and treat diarrhoea[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
]. They also may be used for treating furunculosis[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].
The leaves, and the mucilage in the gum from the bark, have been used for making poultices[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. The bark also acts as a demulcent and mild astringent in the treatment of diarrhoea and dysentery[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

The pounded seeds are applied externally against boils[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

Other Uses

The bark and wood contain gluten and may be used as binders[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].

The seed core contains around 50% of oil, which is used to make soap[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].
The seeds contain an aromatic oil which has been used to make candles and soap[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
]. Although it says aromatic oil, it probably refers to a fixed oil[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

The roots yield fibres that are used for rope manufacture and for paper pulp[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

The yellow-brown wood is moderately hard, moderately heavy, the grain is slightly crossed in narrow bands; the texture fine and dense. It is used for making furniture[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
721
Title
Commercial Woods of the Philippines; Their Preparation and Uses
Publication
Philippines Bureau of Forestry Bulletin No. 14
Author
Schneider E.E.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
Bureau of Forestry; Manilla.
Year
1916
ISBN
 
Description
A series of booklets dealing with various aspects of the Philippine forests. This volume looks at the preparation and uses of the commercial woods of the Philippines. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].
There are a number of tree species (including this one) from southeast Asia that are in the family Lauraceae and produce a useful timber that is either not distinct enough in itself, or is in insufficient supply, to warrant being traded individually. These various species have been lumped together under the trade name ‘medang’[
467
Title
The Philippine Journal of Science. Vol. 4
Publication
 
Author
Freer P.C. (Editor)
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
The Bureau of Science, Philippines.
Year
1909
ISBN
 
Description
A number of articles on Philippine plants, including one on the qualities of Philippine woods.
,
895
Title
Timber Notes - Light Hardwoods II
Publication
Timber Technology Bulletin No. 10
Author
Gan K.S.; Lim S.C.; Choo K.T.
Publisher
Forest Research Institute; Malaysia
Year
1998
ISBN
139-258
Description
Part of an excellent series of publications, this one giving a brief guide to five lesser known groups of light hardwoods from southeast Asia. It is available in PDF format on the Internet.
].
We do not have any more specific information of the wood from this species, but a general description of medang timber is as follows:-
The heartwood is very variable, from light-straw to red-brown and olive brown; the sapwood is ill-defined. The texture is moderately fine but even; the grain interlocked or wavy; the surface dull. The wood is soft to moderately hard, not very durable. It is easy to slightly difficult to resaw, and easy to moderately easy to cross-cut; easy to plane and the surface produced is smooth to moderately smooth. It is suitable for decorative work such as interior finishing, panelling, furniture and cabinet making. It is also suitable for plywood manufacture, whilst the heavier species are suitable for medium construction under cover[
467
Title
The Philippine Journal of Science. Vol. 4
Publication
 
Author
Freer P.C. (Editor)
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
The Bureau of Science, Philippines.
Year
1909
ISBN
 
Description
A number of articles on Philippine plants, including one on the qualities of Philippine woods.
,
895
Title
Timber Notes - Light Hardwoods II
Publication
Timber Technology Bulletin No. 10
Author
Gan K.S.; Lim S.C.; Choo K.T.
Publisher
Forest Research Institute; Malaysia
Year
1998
ISBN
139-258
Description
Part of an excellent series of publications, this one giving a brief guide to five lesser known groups of light hardwoods from southeast Asia. It is available in PDF format on the Internet.
].

Propagation

Seed - germination is not very rapid, approximately 85% germination is achieved in 15 - 45 days[
303
Title
World Agroforesty Centre
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.worldagroforestry.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent online database of a huge range of trees giving very good information on each plant - its uses, ecology, identity, propagation, pests etc.
].

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