Lagerstroemia lanceolata Wall.
LGrowing as a roadside tree
Photograph by: Vinayaraj
Lagerstroemia microcarpa is a large deciduous tree. The bole can be unbranched for 16 - 24 metres[
A valuable and important timber tree, much in request, and giving one of the best of the woods of Western India[
]. It is gathered from the wild for local use and is also traded internationally.
E. Asia - India.
Deciduous and dry evergreen forests, often associated with teak, at elevations up to 1,300 metres[
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A plant of the moist tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 1,300 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 18 - 35°c, but can tolerate 10 - 45°c[
]. When dormant, the plant can survive temperatures down to about 5°c[
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 2,000 - 4,000mm, but tolerates 750 - 5,000mm[
Seedlings benefit from light shade and are capable of bearing considerable shade, but later the tree is best grown in full light[
]. Grows best in a well-drained, light to medium, fertile soil, but can tolerate a range of soil types[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 5.5 - 6.5, tolerating 4.5 - 7.5[
A moderately fast-growing tree[
Trees respond well to coppicing[
The heartwood is red or reddish-brown. The wood is moderately hard, not durable in the open, liable to split. It is used for construction, ship building, coffee cases, furniture etc[
We have no more specific information on the wood of this species, but the following is a general description of wood from this genus:-
The heartwood is light red to reddish brown, darkening on exposure; the sapwood is light yellow brown to greyish white, rather wide[
]. The grain is usually straight; texture moderately fine to rather coarse; rather lustrous; without distinctive odour or taste. It is generally classified as moderately durable and somewhat resistant to termites, although the sapwood is liable to powder-post beetle attack. It saws and works well; finishes to a smooth surface; and takes a good polish. It is used for making furniture, interior joinery, boatbuilding, general construction, parquet flooring and panelling[
Seed - sow in a nursery seedbed with some shade[
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