Articles

Chukrasia tabularis A.H.L. Juss.

Chukrasia tabularis A.H.L. Juss.

Family

Meliaceae

Synonyms

Chickrassia tabularis (A.H.L. Juss.) A.H.L. Juss., Chukrasia velutina (Wallich) Roemer.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia Cherana puteh, repoh, suntang puteh.
English Chickrassy, chittagong wood, Burma almond wood.
Burma (Myanmar) Yinma, tawyinma, kinthatputgyi.
Cambodia Voryong.
Laos Nhom, nhom hin, nhom khao.
Thailand Siat-ka (South-Eastern), yom-hin (General), fakdap (Chanthaburi).
Vietnam l[as]t hoa.

Geographical Distributions

Chukrasia consists of one or possibly two species and distributed from Pakistan eastward through India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Indo-China, southern China and Thailand towards Peninsular Malaysia, northern and eastern Sumatra, and Borneo. Major stands of Chukrasia tabularis are found in India (e.g. western Ghats, Assam), Bangladesh, western Thailand and northern Peninsular Malaysia. C. tabularis has been planted in many countries outside Southeast Asia, e.g. in Nigeria, Cameroon, South Africa, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and Costa Rica.

Description

C. tabularis is a deciduous, monoecious, medium-sized and sometimes fairly large trees that can reach up to 30(-40) m tall. The bole is branchless, measures up to 18(-32) m long, measuring up to 110(-175) cm in diametre and without buttresses. The bark surface is rusty brown or deep brown and deeply fissured or cracked with lenticels while the inner bark is reddish.

The leaves are paripinnate, alternate, entire, asymmetrical and acuminate leaflets (imparipinnate and lobed or incised when juvenile), hairless or with simple hairs.

The flowers are unisexual, thyrses in axillary (sometimes appearingly terminal), with 4- or 5-merous and measure up to 16 mm long. The sepal is lobed while the petals are free, contorted, reflexed in open flowers and white. The staminal tube is cylindrical that narrowing towards the apex. It is entire or weakly lobed, with the anthers attached to the margin. The disk is small. The ovary is flask-shaped, with 3-5-locular where each locule is with many ovules and the style is slender.

The fruit is an erect, woody, ovoid or ellipsoid capsule that opened by 3-5 valves from the apex. The valves are separated into a woody outer and inner layer. The apex of those of the inner layer is deeply bifid. The locules appear as 1 locule due to the breaking down of the septae. The columella is with sharp ridges.

The seeds are 60-100 per locule, flat, with terminal wings, that arranged in layers and alternately "head-to-toe" while the embryo with thin cotyledons. The seedling is epigeal germination. The cotyledons are leafy where the first 2 leaves are arranged opposite while the subsequent ones are arranged spirally. The terminal of leaflet presents in seedling leaves but abortive in mature plants.

Ecology / Cultivation

C. tabularis is usually found scattered in lowland evergreen dipterocarp rainforests, moist semi-evergreen forests or deciduous forests at 300-800 m altitudes. In Peninsular Malaysia, it occasionally occurs as a colonist of bare land, including road cuttings. In Sarawak, it is notably found on limestone. C. tabularis is usually avoids heavy and wet soils. In its natural habitat, the annual rainfall is 1800-3800 mm and even more; the average maximum temperature is 36-40.5°C and the average minimum temperature is 2.5-15.5°C.

Line Drawing / Photograph

Chukrasia_tabularis

References

  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 5(2): Timber trees: Minor commercial timbers.