Myristica macrophylla A.Gray
Drawings of the plant
Photograph by: The Gardens' Bulletin Vol. 23; Singapore, 1968
Myristica castaneifolia is an evergreen tree that can grow from 5 - 30 metres tall. The straight bole is often slender, it can be up to 40cm in diameter[
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use as a condiment and source of wood.
Pacific - Fiji
Open or dense lower montane or hilly forest; at elevations from 100 - 1,100 metres[
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Members of this genus are mainly understorey and canopy trees of primary woodland. They need the shade of woodland, especially when young, though can often tolerate more open positions as they grow larger. They usually succeed on a range of soil types. Most species have a superficial root system and are best grown in positions sheltered from strong winds[
The plant can flower and produce fruit all year round[
Flowers are produced at the end of the branches[
A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if seed is required.
The seed and aril are used as spices[
]. The seed has been used as a substitute for nutmeg[
The red sap (kino), present in the bark of most species in this genus, can be used as a dye that gives a permanent brown stain[
The wood is a useful timber[
We have no more information for this species, but the following is the general information for the wood of trees in this genus:-
The heartwood can be dark reddish brown to light yellow-brown or brown with occasional pink tinge and dark red-purple stripes; it is not clearly differentiated from the paler sapwood. A blood red core is found in some species. The grain is straight; the texture is rather fine to slightly coarse and even; somewhat lustrous; without characteristic odour or taste. Growth rings are distinct, demarcated by layers of terminal parenchyma. The wood is mostly soft or moderately hard and moderately heavy; it is not durable, but is easily treated with preservatives. The wood dries rather slowly but with little degrade, though thin stock tends to warp. It is easy to work with, but sometimes easily splitting; planning is easy, with a smooth to moderately smooth finish; drilling and turning are easy with a smooth finish; nailing properties are generally good with some tendency to splitting. A light hardwood, it is mainly used for light construction work, partitioning, flooring, wall-panelling, moulding and other types of interior finishing, and for making tool-handles, woodcrafts, match boxes and splints, packing cases, crates, and household utensils. It is also suitable for manifacturing plywood, rotary veneer and wrapping and writing papers[
Seed - dries out easily, loses its viability rapidly, and cannot be stored. It is best sown in a shaded position in a nursery seedbed - germination is usually fairly quick with the seed of most species sprouting within 2 - 17 weeks[
]. Grow the young plants on in a shady position, planting them out in their permanent positions when large enough.
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