Hymenaea verrucosa

Author: J. Gaertner

Morphological description
Tree up to 24(-40) m tall. Stipules narrowly elliptic, c. 20 by 4-6 mm.

Leaves bifoliolate; petiole 8-18 mm; petiolules twisted, 3-5 mm. Leaflets coriaceous, ovate to elliptic, oblongelliptic, or broadly falcate, 3.5-12.5 by 2-7 cm; apex obtusely pointed to shortly acuminate; base asymmetric, oblique, more or less obtuse or rounded; glabrous or subglabrous on both surfaces, pellucid-punctate.

Inflorescences paniculate, up to 35 cm long, often much shorter and few-flowered, branchlets and pedicels densely and shortly pubescent; bracts and bracteoles ovate or orbicular; pedicels 2-9 mm, articulate at base.

Flowers small, white, all parts pellucid-punctate. Hypanthium 1.5-2 mm long. Calyx lobes ovate, 7-11 by 4-6 mm, densely appressed, puberulous outside, silvery sericeous inside. Petals clawed and subequal, the larger ones 15-20 mm long (incl. the narrowly linear claw), limb broadly ovate or suborbiculate, 8-10 mm in diameter, sometimes 2 petals minute and scale-like. Stamens unequal, up to c. 25 mm. Ovary s lightly stipitate, densely hirsute at base, more or less glabrous above, 4-ovuled.

Pods ovoid-oblong, ellipsoid-oblong, or obovoid, 2.5-5 by 1.5-3 cm, coarsely verrucose-rugose, reddish to dark brown, resiniferous, 1-3-seeded.

Seeds ellipsoid, 13-18 by 9-12 mm, dark brown.

Native to the coast of eastern Africa, the islands of Zanzibar, E coast of Madagascar, Seychelles, and Mauritius. Introduced and planted in tropical gardens, in Malesia seen from Borneo (Sabah) and Java.

Producing commercially valuable gum-resins or copals and to a limited extent for medicinal purposes. The resin is also used in varnishes. The pulpy (endocarp) tissue surrounding the seeds is edible. See Burkill (1935: 1235), and Heyne (1950: 730).