Jatropha tomentosa Spreng.
Vitex discolor Glaz.
Common Name: Taruma
Taruma is a deciduous tree with an extensive, dense crown growing 12 - 30 metres tall[
]. The straight, cylindrical bole can be quite short and 50 - 90cm in diameter[
The edible fruit is often gathered from the wild for local use. The tree is also cultivated in northern South America as a fruit tree, and has been trialled in Cuba[
]. It is exploited from the wild for its timber and is grown as an ornamental, shade-providing tree[
S. America - Argentina, Paraguay, Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela; C. America - Panama.
]. Gallery forests in moist fertile soils[
]. Lowland rainforest and also strongly seasonal forest near the coast at elevations below 500 metres[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Ornamental, Wild
A plant of the lowland, moist forest where it grows in areas with a distinct dry season as well as areas that have rain all year round[
Grows best in a sunny position[
]. Tolerant of seasonal inundation of the soil[
Newly planted young trees establish and grow away moderately well[
Fruit - raw[
]. A succulent, sweet pulp, but it is difficult to separate from the seed[
]. The fruits are about 3cm long and 2cm wide[
The fruits and leaves have medicinal properties[
Grown as a shade tree[
The heartwood is dark brown to chocolate, the sapwood brown yellowish[
]. The wood has a medium lustre, fine to medium texture and a generally straight grain[
]. It is soft, moderately heavy, durable, easy to work and finishes well[
]. It is used for furniture, stakes, railway ties and veneer[
]. It is also pulped for making paper[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a nursery seedbed in a sunny position[
]. A moderate germination rate is usually attained, with the seed sprouting within 60 - 70 days[
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