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Useful Tropical Plants

Santalum acuminatum

(R.Br.) DC.

Santalaceae

+ Synonyms

Eucarya acuminata R.Br.

Common Name: Sweet Quandong

Santalum acuminatum
Tree in native habitat
Photograph by: Fagg, M.
Image credit to Australian National Botanic Gardens
Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum Santalum acuminatum

General Information

Sweet quandong is a very variable, erect, evergreen shrub or small tree growing from 1 - 10 metres tall, with spreading to pendent branches and sparse pale to olive green foliage[
365
Title
Flora of New South Wales
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/floraonline.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line resource giving a brief botanical description of all the native plants of New South Wales, their habitat and range, together with diagrams and photographs of the plants.
,
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. A root hemi-parasite, it obtains water and nutrients from host plants growing close by and does not grow well in the absence of a host[
312
Title
Traditional Trees of Pacific Islands
Publication
 
Author
Elevitch. Craig. R. (Editor)
Publisher
Permanent Agriculture Resources, Hawaii
Year
2006
ISBN
0970254458
Description
Beautifully produced book with superb photos and detailed information on over 50 species of useful plants of the Pacific Islands.
].
A favoured food of the native Aborigines, the fruit is becoming increasingly popular to a wider audience and is being cultivated and sold in speciality stores[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. At least one cultivar has been developed with a much higher quality fruit[
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
,
365
Title
Flora of New South Wales
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/floraonline.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line resource giving a brief botanical description of all the native plants of New South Wales, their habitat and range, together with diagrams and photographs of the plants.

Range

Australia - all mainland states.

Habitat

Sandy soils in the dry interior, also in loamy and clay soils[
154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
,
157
Title
Australian Native Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Wrigley. J. W. and Fagg. M.
Publisher
Collins. (Australia)
Year
1988
ISBN
0-7322-0021-0
Description
A lovely book, written in order to encourage Australian gardeners to grow their native plants. A little bit of information for the plant project.
]. Grows in a range of woodland communities, on sandy sites to gravelly ridges[
365
Title
Flora of New South Wales
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/floraonline.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line resource giving a brief botanical description of all the native plants of New South Wales, their habitat and range, together with diagrams and photographs of the plants.
]. Found in wide variety of habitats characterised by generally nutrient poor, free draining soils[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *  *
Medicinal Rating *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitEvergreen Shrub
Height5.00 m
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Wild

Cultivation Details

Sweet quandong is mainly found in drier subtropical lowland areas, it just finds its way into the tropics. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 18 - 25°c, but can tolerate 5 - 40°c[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. When dormant, the plant can survive temperatures down to about -2°c, but young growth can be severely damaged at 0°c[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 250 - 400mm, but tolerates 125 - 500mm[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
Prefers a position in full sun[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. Grows naturally in a generally nutrient poor, free draining soil[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. Plants are quite drought and salt tolerant[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. Prefers a pH in the range 7 - 8, tolerating 6.5 - 8.5[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
A semi-parasitic plant, obtaining some of its nutriment from the roots of other plants[
144
Title
Wild Food in Australia.
Publication
 
Author
Cribb. A. B. and J. W.
Publisher
Fontana
Year
1976
ISBN
0-00-634436-4
Description
A very good pocket guide.
]. The plant has green leaves containing chlorophyll, and is thus able to photosynthesize - it relies on host plants only for water and soil nutrients, not for sugars, which it can produce itself [
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. In a natural situation, the plant seems to rely on nitrogen fixing trees such as Acacia and Casuarina, though it is known to parasitize many other legumes, shrubs, herbs and grasses[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. It normally has more than one host at a time[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].
Quandong saplings need to be planted within range of the roots of at least two potential hosts[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. Ensure a few metres distance between any surrounding trees so its natural form isn't spoilt and make sure it has a full sun[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. It is critical to maintain the health of host species for the Quandong to perform. Theoretically, this means all plants within at least 10 metres of the Quandong because its roots can reach that far[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].
There are some named cultivars[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw or cooked[
144
Title
Wild Food in Australia.
Publication
 
Author
Cribb. A. B. and J. W.
Publisher
Fontana
Year
1976
ISBN
0-00-634436-4
Description
A very good pocket guide.
,
157
Title
Australian Native Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Wrigley. J. W. and Fagg. M.
Publisher
Collins. (Australia)
Year
1988
ISBN
0-7322-0021-0
Description
A lovely book, written in order to encourage Australian gardeners to grow their native plants. A little bit of information for the plant project.
,
167
Title
A Field Guide to Australian Trees.
Publication
 
Author
Holliday. I. and Hill. R.
Publisher
Frederick Muller Ltd.
Year
1974
ISBN
0-85179-627-3
Description
A well illustrated and very readable book, but it does not contain much information for the plant project.
]. A thin, acid flesh[
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
]. A sweetish flavour[
365
Title
Flora of New South Wales
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/floraonline.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line resource giving a brief botanical description of all the native plants of New South Wales, their habitat and range, together with diagrams and photographs of the plants.
]. Eaten raw when fully ripe, it is also used as a pie filling, or made into jams, jellies, sauces, syrups and chutneys[
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
]. It can be dried for later use, and is said to taste nicer once dried[
157
Title
Australian Native Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Wrigley. J. W. and Fagg. M.
Publisher
Collins. (Australia)
Year
1988
ISBN
0-7322-0021-0
Description
A lovely book, written in order to encourage Australian gardeners to grow their native plants. A little bit of information for the plant project.
,
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
]. The globose fruit is 15 - 25 mm long, bright shining red, rarely yellow[
365
Title
Flora of New South Wales
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au/floraonline.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An on-line resource giving a brief botanical description of all the native plants of New South Wales, their habitat and range, together with diagrams and photographs of the plants.
].

Seed - roasted[
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
]. Oily and nutritious, but not very palatable[
144
Title
Wild Food in Australia.
Publication
 
Author
Cribb. A. B. and J. W.
Publisher
Fontana
Year
1976
ISBN
0-00-634436-4
Description
A very good pocket guide.
,
154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
,
167
Title
A Field Guide to Australian Trees.
Publication
 
Author
Holliday. I. and Hill. R.
Publisher
Frederick Muller Ltd.
Year
1974
ISBN
0-85179-627-3
Description
A well illustrated and very readable book, but it does not contain much information for the plant project.
]. The seed contains 60% oil and 25% protein[
301
Title
Cornucopia II
Publication
 
Author
Facciola. S.
Publisher
Kampong Publications, California.
Year
1998
ISBN
0-9628087-2-5
Description
The second edition of an excellent guide to the edible uses of plants, though it does not give any details of cultivation etc.
].

Medicinal

Provides a liniment for use on sores, boils etc[
154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
].

Other Uses

The bark contains up to 18% tannin[
154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
].

The seed is rich in oil and burns like a candlenut[
144
Title
Wild Food in Australia.
Publication
 
Author
Cribb. A. B. and J. W.
Publisher
Fontana
Year
1976
ISBN
0-00-634436-4
Description
A very good pocket guide.
,
154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
].

Wood - hard, heavy, close-grained. It is used for making furniture etc[
154
Title
Flora of Victoria.
Publication
 
Author
Ewart. A. J.
Publisher
University Press; Melbourne
Year
1930
ISBN
 
Description
A flora of eastern Australia, it is rather short on information that is useful to the plant project.
]. The wood is oily and makes a good friction stick for making fire[
167
Title
A Field Guide to Australian Trees.
Publication
 
Author
Holliday. I. and Hill. R.
Publisher
Frederick Muller Ltd.
Year
1974
ISBN
0-85179-627-3
Description
A well illustrated and very readable book, but it does not contain much information for the plant project.
].

Propagation

The seed has a dormancy that is strongest in fresh seeds[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. Storing the seed for 12 months raises the germination rate from about 5% to nearer 30%, whilst three year old seed has around 35% germination rate[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].
As with many hard seed coated species, the testa needs to be broken in order to induce germination. This can be easily, though carefully, done with a vice[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].
Sow the cracked seed into an appropriate media and keep moist[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. Germination should occur within a month but may take up to four months[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
]. The optimum temperature for germination is 15°c[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].
When the cotyledons have hardened, pot the seedling into free draining media with half strength combined slow and moderate release fertiliser. Seed energy reserves will sustain growth until the roots have established[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].
At this point it is recommended to make a host available. Using one that dominates the pot or crowds the seedling is not advisable because the Quandong has some uptake from its roots and may be outcompeted. Sowing Clover (Trifolium spp.) seed or planting Couch Grass (Cynodon dactylon) cuttings into the pot when transplanting the seedling has proven to be successful, however care is needed as these species can be weedy. The use of a locally indigenous grass or Pea flowering plant is advised[
343
Title
Growing Native Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/gnp/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A series of articles giving details of cultivation and matters of general interest (including a few plant uses) on over 250 Australian plants.
].

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