Bagassa sagotiana Bureau ex Benth. & Hook.f.
Bagassa tiliifolia (Gaudich.) Benoist
Laurea tiliifolia Gaudich.
Piper tiliifolium Desv. ex Ham.
Piper tiliifolium Schltdl. & Cham.
Common Name: Bagasse
Bagasse is a large, well-formed, semideciduous tree with a flat, umbrella-shaped crown; it can grow up to 30 metres tall. The unbuttressed, cylindrical bole is generally 50 - 60cm in diameter, though it can reach 90cm. It can be unbranched for the first 18 - 20 metres[
The plant is harvested from the wild as a local source of food and timber. The wood is of good quality and is harvested commercially.
Northern S. America - northern Brazil, French Guiana, Surinam, Guyana.
A canopy tree in rainforests at low to moderate elevations[
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A tree of the moist tropics where it can be found at low to moderate elevations.
Succeeds in full sun to moderate shade[
]. Found mainly in well-drained, fertile soils in the wild[
]. Established plants can tolerate some drought[
Newly planted young trees usually establish well and grow away well[
A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if fruit and seed are required[
Fruit - raw[
]. A pleasant, sweet flavour, even though the fruit is astringent[
]. Sweet and juicy, with a plum-like odour[
]. The fruit is about the size of an orange[
The bark is fibrous and when cut yields large quantities of a sweet, sticky latex[
The heartwood is yellow when first cut, often with darker streaks, becoming a lustrous golden brown to russet after seasoning and exposure; it is sharply demarcated from the narrow, 2 - 4cm wide band of pale yellow to yellowish white sapwood. The grain is medium to moderately coarse and usually interlocked, presenting a rather broad striped figure on the radial surface. Growth layers are indistinct. Odour and taste are not evident once seasoned. The wood is hard, heavy, elastic, very strong, very durable in resistance to both white-rot and brown-rot fungi and slightly resistant to damage by marine borers. It seasons somewhat slowly, with a high risk of distortion and slight risk of checking. Once dry it is stable in service. It is easy to saw; difficult to split radially; it takes a high lustrous finish and holds its place well after manufacture. It lends itself well to natural bends for boat and ship members. However, the wood is similar to hickory in hardness and requires more energy to machine than less dense woods. The wood is used locally for general building purposes, heavy construction, carpentry, furniture, an marine and boat construction. It is probably suitable for insulator pins, planking, decking and framing in boatbuilding, and for furniture and cabinetwork. Because of its high resilience, it may also be suitable for some types of sporting equipment[
Seed - best sown in a sunny position in a nursery seedbed as soon as it is ripe[
]. A germination rate generally lower than 50% is usually achieved within a few weeks[
]. Prick the seedlings out into individual containers once they are about 5 - 7cm tall[
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