A polymorphic species, up to 14 distinct forms have been recognised by some botanists, including the Indian species Myristica magnifica, which is treated as distinct in Flora Malesiana[
Myristica morindiifolia Blume
Myristica multinervia A.C.Sm.
Myristica procera A.C.Sm.
Myristica sericea Warb.
Myristica subcordata Blume
Myristica fatua is an evergreen tree with a narrow, open, relatively sparse crown; it can grow up to 37 metres tall[
]. The bole is straight with low buttresses[
]. The tree often produces stilt roots, especially when growing in swampy soils[
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a condiment, medicine and source of wood. It is occasionally cultivated on Java and in Malaysia[
]. The plant's attractive foliage makes it suitable for cultivation as an ornamental[
None knownLots of stilt roots surround this tree growing near water
E. Asia - southern India, Indonesia, Philippines, New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Samoa.
Usually found as a canopy tree in a wide variety of habitats, especially swamp forests, in primary or secondary forest, at elevations from near sea level to 1,600 metres[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Ornamental, Wild
Members of this genus are mainly understorey and canopy trees of primary woodland. They need the shade of woodland, especially when young, though can often tolerate more open positions as they grow larger. They usually succeed on a range of soil types. Most species have a superficial root system and are best grown in positions sheltered from strong winds[
Flowers are produced at the end of the branches[
A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if seed is required.
Nuts and arils - dried and used as spices[
]. Smaller than nutmeg, and not as fragrant[
]. The fresh nut is faintly aromatic but loses its aroma on drying and storage[
]. The nuts are occasionally used as a condiment, though they have little commercial value[
]. The ellipsoid to oblong seeds are 30 - 35mm long[
The seeds are used in traditional medicine in the treatment of headaches and other sicknesses. They are powdered, then mixed with senna as a purgative[
The latex is used to check nasal haemorrhage in Guadalcanal[
The red sap (kino), present in the bark of most species in this genus, can be used as a dye that gives a permanent brown stain[
The off-white wood is very soft and easy to cut, usually not differentiated into heartwood and sapwood[
]. It has been used for posts when building traditional houses[
We have no further information for this species, but the following is the general information for the wood of trees in this genus:-
The heartwood can be dark reddish brown to light yellow-brown or brown with occasional pink tinge and dark red-purple stripes; it is not clearly differentiated from the paler sapwood. A blood red core is found in some species. The grain is straight; the texture is rather fine to slightly coarse and even; somewhat lustrous; without characteristic odour or taste. Growth rings are distinct, demarcated by layers of terminal parenchyma. The wood is mostly soft or moderately hard and moderately heavy; it is not durable, but is easily treated with preservatives. The wood dries rather slowly but with little degrade, though thin stock tends to warp. It is easy to work with, but sometimes easily splitting; planning is easy, with a smooth to moderately smooth finish; drilling and turning are easy with a smooth finish; nailing properties are generally good with some tendency to splitting. A light hardwood, it is mainly used for light construction work, partitioning, flooring, wall-panelling, moulding and other types of interior finishing, and for making tool-handles, woodcrafts, match boxes and splints, packing cases, crates, and household utensils. It is also suitable for manifacturing plywood, rotary veneer and wrapping and writing papers[
Seed - dries out easily, loses its viability rapidly, and cannot be stored. It is best sown in a shaded position in a nursery seedbed - germination is usually fairly quick with the seed of most species sprouting within 2 - 17 weeks[
]. Grow the young plants on in a shady position, planting them out in their permanent positions when large enough.
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