Intsia palembanica

Author: Miquel

Morphological description (palembanica Intsia compl FM35 )
Tree up to 45 m (rarely more) high and 4 m (once recorded) in diameter (palembanica Intsia tree 139531); buttresses up to 7 m high, extending outwards 6 m, 30 cm thick; bark palembanica Intsia bark 139529 .

Leaves 4-jugate, rarely associated with some 2-, 3-, or 5-jugate; petiole and rachis (3.5-)9.5-17.5(-26) cm, both puberulous, glabrescent; petiolules 2-5 mm. Leaflets ovate, elliptic, sometimes broad-ovate or -elliptic, or suborbicular, rarely obovate or lanceolate, (3-)10-13.5(-18.5) by (3-)5-7.5(-10.5) cm; apex obtuse or rounded, sometimes slightly notched, (shortly) acuminate; base obtuse, rounded, cuneate, rarely slightly truncate or subcordate, often somewhat asymmetric; nerves 6-10 per side.

Inflorescences up to c. 10 cm long, pubescent, glabrescent; pedicels 3-12 mm.

Flowers: (palembanica Intsia fl 256080 )Hypanthium 3-4 mm long. Calyx lobes (broadly) elliptic, ovate, or slightly obovate, 6-8(-12) by 3-6.5(-8) mm. Petal : limb 3-6(-10) by 3-6.5(-8) mm; claw 2-5 mm long. Fertile stamens: filaments 2-4 cm; anthers c. 2 mm long; staminodes 4-10 mm. Ovary 5-6 mm long; style 2-3.5 cm.

Pods 15-19(-40) by 5.5-7(-9) cm (palembanica Intsia pod 139527 ; palembanica Intsia pods 139530 ).

Seeds 3-4.5 by 1.5-3 cm, 0.5-1.2 cm thick.

India (Andamans), Burma, Thailand; throughout Malesia (except Java ?).

Habitat & Ecology
Widespread, in coastal regions, edges of seasonal swamps, on inundated lands, locally common to very common (e. g. in Japen Island, Irian Jaya), in lowland primary or older secondary forests, sometimes on sandstone and limestone hills, from sea level up to 850 m altitude. Flowering from January - April, August - November; fruiting from February - December.

The timber (international trade name Merbau ) has a wide range of uses both indoors and outdoors, the main source of merbau timber being Intsia palembanica . See Vink (1994: 322-232) and Johns et al. (1993: 264-270).