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Useful Tropical Plants

Tetragastris altissima

(Aubl.) Swart.

Burseraceae

+ Synonyms

Amyris altissima (Aubl.) Willd.

Bursera altissima (Aubl.) Baill.

Icica altissima Aubl.

Icica cuspidata Kunth

Protium altissimum (Aubl.) Marchand

Tetragastris phanerosepala Sandwith

Tingulonga altissima (Aubl.) Kuntze

Common Name:

Tetragastris altissima
Seeds
Photograph by: C. E. Timothy Paine
Creative Commons License
Tetragastris altissima Tetragastris altissima Tetragastris altissima Tetragastris altissima

General Information

Tetragastris altissima is an evergreen tree; it can grow 15 - 30 metres tall. The straight bole can be unbranched for most of its height and 50 - 60cm in diameter[
363
Title
Technical Information on 134 Species of Bolivian Woods
Publication
 
Author
USDA Forest Service -- Forest Products Lab
Website
http://www2.fpl.fs.fed.us/publications/
Publisher
USDA Forest Service
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A PDF file, available for download. Exactly what the title says, brief and to the point.
,
422
Title
Fruits of the Guianan Flora
Publication
 
Author
van Roosmalen. M.G.M.
Publisher
Institute of Systematic Boyany, Utrecht University; Netherlands.
Year
1985
ISBN
90-9000988-4
Description
Terse descriptions of over 1,700 species from the Guianas that bear fruits - not necessarily edible! Often mentions if the fruit is edible, plus gives brief description of habit and habitat.
,
447
Title
Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Publication
 
Author
Little E.L.; Wadsworth F.H.
Publisher
USDA, Forest Service; Washington.
Year
1964
ISBN
 
Description
Contains detailed information, and usually an illustration, on 250 tree species, including both native and exotic species.
,
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.
].
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of wood.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References


Range

S. America - Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Venezuela, the Guyanas.

Habitat

Lowland rainforests, at elevations below 500 metres[
412
Title
Illustrated Guide to the Trees of Peru
Publication
 
Author
Pennington, T.D.; Reynel, C. & Daza, A.
Publisher
David Hunt; Sherbourne, England.
Year
2004
ISBN
0 9538134 3 6
Description
A very terse guide to the trees of Peru, managing to give basic guides to a large number of genera, with more detail on a few species in each genus.
,
422
Title
Fruits of the Guianan Flora
Publication
 
Author
van Roosmalen. M.G.M.
Publisher
Institute of Systematic Boyany, Utrecht University; Netherlands.
Year
1985
ISBN
90-9000988-4
Description
Terse descriptions of over 1,700 species from the Guianas that bear fruits - not necessarily edible! Often mentions if the fruit is edible, plus gives brief description of habit and habitat.
].

Properties

Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitEvergreen Tree
Height18.00 m
Self-fertileNo
Cultivation StatusWild

Cultivation Details



A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if fruit and seed are required[
412
Title
Illustrated Guide to the Trees of Peru
Publication
 
Author
Pennington, T.D.; Reynel, C. & Daza, A.
Publisher
David Hunt; Sherbourne, England.
Year
2004
ISBN
0 9538134 3 6
Description
A very terse guide to the trees of Peru, managing to give basic guides to a large number of genera, with more detail on a few species in each genus.
].

Edible Uses

We have no specific information for this plant, but the fruits of Tetragastris species are generally red, opening at maturity to expose a stone with an edibe, sweet white covering that attracts animals like pacas, peccaries and tortoises, which disperse some seeds throughout the forest. Forest people snack on the white pulp when the stones fall[
757
Title
Fruit Trees and Useful Plants in Amazonian Life
Publication
Non-Wood Forest Products 20.
Author
Shanley P.; Cymerys M.; Serra M.; Medina G. (Editors)
Website
http://www.fao.org/docrep/015/i2360e/i2360e.pdf
Publisher
FAO, United Nations
Year
2011
ISBN
978-92-5-107007-9
Description
Quite a lot of information on a number of useful plants growing in the Amazon. It can be downloaded from the Internet.
].

Medicinal

An emulsion of the fresh aromatic resin, in water, is used to treat bronchitis and lung infections[
348
Title
Medicinal Plants of the Guianas
Publication
 
Author
DeFilipps, R. A.; Maina, S. L.; & Crepin, J.
Website
http://botany.si.edu/bdg/medicinal/index.html
Publisher
Smithsonian Museum
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A down-loadable PDF document of a book in pre-publication awaiting illustration. An excellent, if rather terse, guide to the traditional medicinal uses of the plants of the region
].

The bark and the wood are recommended in the treatment of intermittent fevers and urinary diseases[
526
Title
An Illustrated Dictionary of Medicine, Biology and Allied Sciences.
Publication
 
Author
Gould G.M.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
P. Blakiston's Son & Co.; Philadelphia.
Year
1907
ISBN
 
Description
A major work at the time, though very dated now. Contains quite a lot of information about medicinal plant uses.
].

Other Uses

An aromatic resin is obtained from the bark. It is used medicinally[
348
Title
Medicinal Plants of the Guianas
Publication
 
Author
DeFilipps, R. A.; Maina, S. L.; & Crepin, J.
Website
http://botany.si.edu/bdg/medicinal/index.html
Publisher
Smithsonian Museum
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A down-loadable PDF document of a book in pre-publication awaiting illustration. An excellent, if rather terse, guide to the traditional medicinal uses of the plants of the region
,
526
Title
An Illustrated Dictionary of Medicine, Biology and Allied Sciences.
Publication
 
Author
Gould G.M.
Website
http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org
Publisher
P. Blakiston's Son & Co.; Philadelphia.
Year
1907
ISBN
 
Description
A major work at the time, though very dated now. Contains quite a lot of information about medicinal plant uses.
].

The heartwood is light brown to orangey-yellow, sometimes with frequent small, black, resinous spots; it is clearly demarcated from the 4 - 6cm wide band of orange-yellow sapwood. Texture is fine; the grain interlocked; lustre is medium; taste and odour indistinct. The wood is heavy, hard, of moderate elasticity, moderately durable, with resistance to attacks by fungi, dry wood borers and termites. The drying rate is normal to slow with a high risk of distortion or checking; once dry it is poorly stable in service. Sawing and machining are nore or less easy, but with a fairly high blunting effect - stellite-tipped sawteeth are recommended. Nailing and screwing are good, though pre-boring is necessary to avoid splitting; gluing is correct. The wood is used for industrial or heavy flooring, interior stairs, joinery, heavy carpentry, bridges etc[
363
Title
Technical Information on 134 Species of Bolivian Woods
Publication
 
Author
USDA Forest Service -- Forest Products Lab
Website
http://www2.fpl.fs.fed.us/publications/
Publisher
USDA Forest Service
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A PDF file, available for download. Exactly what the title says, brief and to the point.
,
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 -
Cite as: Tropical Plants Database, Ken Fern. tropical.theferns.info. 2019-10-16. <tropical.theferns.info/viewtropical.php?id=Tetragastris+altissima>

Comments

Antonio Carlos da Silva Zanzini 13th February 2016 9:39
In Brazil, common name is amescla-aroeira or amescla-vermelha.

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